Inhabiting Underground

TEAM: Dionysios Koutsioumaris, Georgios Fiorentinos, Argyris Chronopoulos – NATIONAL TECHNICAL UNIVERSITY OF ATHENS (NTUA)

The ambition of this project is to exploit a common latent potential of the contemporary metropolis: that, which is hidden beneath its surface in the form of underground parking lots. Athens, the Greek capital, presented as a case study, provides a remarkable amount of such spaces, rendered redundant by the economic crisis. At the same time, a forthcoming change of their ownership policy, handed to the state, as long as several ecologic and urban planning theories that appear keen on leaving the car outside the metropolitan borders, pose a critical argument regarding the management of about 12.000 square meters of former parking space per lot. Subsequently, a reuse issue emerges which eventually ends up as a design subject, a problem expected to rise up as a main architectural preoccupation of the 21st century.

Our proposal regards the rehabilitation of those forgotten mega-structures across the metropolis of Athens. On the notion of the mixing of functions, organized throughout their underground levels, our design examines the creation of an uncanny type of “minimum-existence” accommodation network across the city center. One of the biggest centrally located underground parking lots of the city, which will be used as our example, is found beneath Kaniggos square, part of the larger district of Omonoia. Considering that, accommodation could operate as a “life-supplier” for other uses and vice-versa, we propose an L-shaped mass of accommodation spaces, spanning through the second and third basement and occupying one of the building’s boundaries. This “inhabited” mass surrounds the public, multi-functional core of the building. The use of accommodation co-exists with a night club and a metro station both located at the bottom (forth underground level). As the metro passenger, the night clubber and the sleep-over rise towards the city surface, they come across an underground public space surrounded by stores and a gym on the third and second basements, whereas all the former are topped by a large flea market situated just beneath the city level (first basement). The proposed blend of uses questions the basic needs of a typical hotel, as its visitors may either appear as “leftovers” of a rough party night, city flaneurs in need of a cheap night’s sleep or wanderers of this mega-structure. In this hotel the usually appointed time of sleep becomes an irrelevant issue: under the city it’s always dark. The only clue of time passing is the “coming and going” of the metro carriages and the limited amount of natural light penetrating the slabs until it reaches the third basement.

The hotel visitors get to choose between three room typologies, spread through the double storey L shape (5m width) mass: the single bed, the single bunk bed and the double bed room, all accompanied with a small bathroom. All rooms come at a depth of 3.5meters and a width varying from 1.5 to 2.3meters, thus underlying the meaning of the low-need hotel which celebrates the only thing that is left to do between intense metropolitan activities: rest.
Luxury is not an issue.


TEAM: Joel Wong, Amanda Rahayuningtyas – Southern California Institute of Architecture

What is a hotel, really?

A hotel is a lot of things to different people. As a typology that has been around for long, particularly in Architecture, its function has been interpreted and reinterpreted far too many times. To attempt to de ne its true function is futile. Like every other Architecture that has been important enough to still exist, a hotel must be adaptable, exible and receptive. It should constantly reinvent itself as frequently as Architecture does. It should always question itself and nd ways to rede ne its impression on people’s minds.

Ultimately, a hotel’s duty is to serve. It must trust that the people know what is best for them. It must also give the people the freedom to choose what they want.

“Hote(l)volution” is a concept that comes into physical conception through the help of the people. It is low-maintenance and can occur anywhere. A typical “hote(l)volution” would be a large open space with multiple charging ports. A communal shower and toilet will then be set up at an inconspicuous part of the room. A booth at the front will rent out these universal modules, at an outrageously low price, that can be personalized to tailor to one’s needs. Its assembly is as easy as playing building blocks as it comes together to meet the next module through a highly thought-out custom click-and-release system for a simpler assembly process. This means that tools are not needed to assemble the modules. Think primitive hut meets technology and innovation. It comes with 4 custom and interchangeable panels, all of which play different roles (for example, you may use an opaque panel if you value your privacy). This promotes personalization and recognizes the idiosyncrasies of individuals when it comes to sleeping in a hotel room. It is a simple and straight-to-the-point solution that in turn provides us with more valid questions about the typology of a hotel.

This project questions the redundancy of certain elements in a typical hotel room. It embraces the uniqueness of individuals and thus entrusts them with the freedom to pave their own fate. This project delves into the question of basic necessities. What would different consumers require in a hotel? What are the general factors to consider? This project contests the typical “one size ts all policy” that hotels would normally adopt. It does so by giving the people the tools necessary for them to create their own version of a hotel room. This project challenges conventional Architecture and the result, an Architecture that is an absolute representation of human individuality and human capabilities.

Why should Architecture tell people what to do? Now is the time for Architecturevolution. It is time for people to tell Architecture what it must become.


TEAM: Mina Bayölken, Zülal Yüksel

Working and sleeping areas where you can rent determined hours.

Rent: The building is formed by working and sleeping areas. This building is the different version of the standart hotel form and it accompanies a brand with itself. A brand which is located in every city and it works with membership system. People who pay to become a member of this brand have a privilage to use these areas in determined hours or days in a month according to their membership statues. In case of their needs like if they want to use the area more hours or days it reflects to their membership cards as an extra. People who become a member can take the advantages of this brand in every city.

Determined hours of the day or determined days: Members can use these areas in the hours or days when they determined to their cards. They create the place where they can sleep or work. A dancer can create a free field to make practices, a painter can create an atelier, an architect can create a place where she/he can work all day long and night, a boss can create a meeting room or a person who is the member of this brand can create a sleeping area for office breaks or before/after her/him flight hours.

Working and sleeping areas: Building plan can change in every city but the concept is always same. Areas which is formed in three meter seperation look at the same gallery which contains reception,lobby and cafe in itself. Working and sleeping areas are seperated by a railed, sliding box which contains the functions like bed, working/meeting table, working board, minibar in itself. According to member’s choice this system
provides to create flexible working space. Member can use the functions which she/he identified to her/him card. If member prefer bigger area for that day she/he can use sliding box in six meter and it reflects her/him card as an extra. There are bathroom and balconies in this areas for member who use that area and an extra balconies and WC’s in the gallery and ground floor for every member. Members can create a semi-private space with movable glass panels and blinds to sleep. It is up to member’s choice. There are earphones for every area to resolve the voice problem like snoring, talking. This earphone can prevent the undesired voices. If member want to listen music or other things they can take their flashdisk with them and listen it with the earphone system. Earphone system has a microphone system for meetings. This microphone service will be identified to member’s card as an extra too.

Eroto mechanics

TEAM: Julia Mitsidi – University of Nicosia

Future Hotel: Working, Copulating and Sleeping

The future hotel will accommodate working and entertainment environment. Two contrast programs, serviced – office and prostitution will be combined in order to fulfill the new hotel proposition. The architectural alignment is under the lens of technology and voyeurism, thus creating a rather ‘playful’ atmosphere among gazing. As serviced – office and prostitution are programs that need temporary accommodation, the hotel will satisfy their concept, considering time as the fourth dimension. The formality of the one and the informality of the other creates new typologies for the working environment and finally new typologies for hotel (sleeping typologies), having in mind the surrounding context in Krakow, Poland.


TA. Amphitheatrically arranged office (workers become the voyeurs but also the subject of gaze) TB. Structure becomes the office area (the instrumental design of the building allows offices to exist

upon the walls as if the structure becomes the office area)

TC. Movable Office (floor is also becoming a service for the office, which allows the office area to move along the space in order to create the flexibility a serviced-office needs)


I. Mobile Sleeping (a device that connects the proposal design with the existing context, allowing the

users of the existing buildings to experience sleep in the hotel)

II. Bed filled with air – fume from the existing chimneys (bed is acting as a tool inside the proposition and is treated as a service inside the building using, once again, the qualities and the characteristics of the existing context)

III. In – Between Levels Sleeping (sleeping in spaces in between other areas like offices intrigues the idea of voyeurism but also sleeping becomes an active program in the building)

The whole structure is a set of parts (components) coming together to create a socially interactive machine – building, physically and mentally, along with intangible experiences using a technological culture. In addition, the ‘new’ hotel synthesis brings the sexuality in space through the organization of the program and hierarchy of levels. Moreover, the new hotel proposition is actually using the surrounding environment creating circulations into the building converting it, into a nodal point to Krakow. The strategy to do that, along with the whole building treatment, was based in the tectonic logic – a system, where the actual construction of the building is merged with the experiential construction -ideology of the user.


Serviced office is a flexible office area that can be rented for a period of time by an individual or a company. Prostitution is lawfulness and inside the project the possibilities of this is to perceive it as a big financial company in order to bring a new social order in things. Having that said, a guest, an individual, or a company will check – in to the hotel, either for work or leisure but it will also serve a temporary accommodation area considering the new typologies are founded through the whole concept. Welcome to the Eroto-mechanics Hotel.

In the Open

TEAM: Matteo Pavanello – Università di Ferrara

or “What if everybody was homeless?”

This proposal aims at using public parks as outside sleeping places.
It does so by providing a better environment for the actual dweller of parks, homeless people. Parks can offer great condition for sleeping: no noise, no small rooms but huge spaces in nature, central location and, most important, no rent to pay. In our current cities, many people would love it. The only minimum requirement to satisfy a common lifestyle, is hygiene.
Hence, our proposal is an high tech toilet and shower, able to clean and disinfect itself after every use. This would help homeless people to take care of themself and near them to the rest of society.
The proposed device therefore offers a main extra functions: it is a vending machine of inflatable tents, inviting people to sleep outside in parks.

The FLOW Project

TEAM: Adamantia Karavasili, Christine Karavasili – National Technical University of Athens

A multicultural approach in hotel room design

The FLOW project is a project about the design of a hotel room based on different cultural and body needs of different people around the world. This leads to a flowing (geometrical but not strictly designed) space, flexible enough to accommodate everyone in need of sleep and rest, taking into consideration a rather simple but important issue: how can a hotel room, which is the same for all of us, satisfy the unique needs of every single person in their own way? For instance, we all need to sleep or sit, but in our own way, according to what we like, our needs or preferences, our cultural and religious beliefs. In contrast, the places we can sit or sleep in a room are strictly positioned; the bed, the chairs, the rest places are all specified.

So, aim of the project is to create a room, flexible in its design, with no specific citation of the uses, especially because the cultural and the religious backgrounds of each one vary. In our everyday lives, religious beliefs, cultural aspects and everyday choices and habits it is necessary to live in a place that can meet our needs like our homes do, even when we travel. Additionally, traveling is sometimes much more than just a leisure activity; people also travel for business or in terms of contemporary nomadity in some cases, so they need to create a “home” in their hotel room. If they can choose where to sleep, where to sit or stand, and do it in their own way, then the hotel room can be like their home.

In order to create such a space, we design simple building elements (vertical walls and horizontal levels) that interact with each other, in different heights and various and alternative ways. There is no specific plan or drawing of the room, as the results vary and there can be a lot of different rooms with alternative designs, satisfying different people and needs (technical image).


There is no furniture in this room, walls and horizontal levels define the space. Only bathroom and kitchen facilities are positioned in a specific place. The needed equipment for the sleep or the resting process is given to the occupant of the room in order for them to place them wherever they want. For instance, the mattress for the sleep can be put anywhere they want, as it is not a bed, strictly positioned and difficult to be moved (functional image). The levels are perfect for eating on the floor, as Japanese do, or pray as Muslims. One can sit on the floor and chat with friends, next to the light of the windows or in a dark corner. Movement and privacy are defined according to the position of the walls and the levels of the room, while contact with nature and the outside space is present in any room as it is necessary in everyday lives of all (presentation image). These rooms can be built anywhere, as long as there is connection with nature and open space around.

The Chamber

TEAM: Marja Mia Kolendić, Anita Krmek – KolendicKrmek d.o.o.

an introverted sleeping setup for the all-round traveler

What are the sleeping arrangements?
The question often asked when planning to travel. Is it a hotel, hostel, at the friend’s friend house? In the car? At the airport check-in or couch surfing?
The app era in which we currently live allows you to organize every single detail of your life by not moving an inch from your phone. Should you want a facial or a taxi ride, maybe a flower delivery or the amount of water you yet have to drink today.
You use web and app search for setting up your chamber. You can see its location and its vacancy in the city grid. Everything is made online and via an app or web page. You then proceed to use the hotel room by yourself but for the other services needed you have the city you are now in, to provide you with the other part of the scheme. The hotel scheme is the city net of streets and buildings and the room part is the chamber; specially designed for this type of use. It provides solitude and privacy much needed on your travel, but at the same time you are a part of a big community which is now the city itself. There is no other solution but to search for required facilities out there.
The aim is to bring back THE hotel room. The one with a specific smell of washed linen, worn out carpets and flaring furniture. To evocate that memories we referenced all that in our chamber with printed moldings and carpeted floors. The hotel what it used to mean. Breakfasts with other guests, drinks in the lobby before dinner, tea in the afternoon… It was a colorful and complex scheme resembling a city map. With both having extra services like laundry washing and ironing, cocktail bars, nightclubs and restaurants. Besides having a room – „apartment“ in the city in which you can sleep you could get all of the other conveniences. The main part missed nowadays, in the new „not- a-tourist-but-a-traveler“ must-be is that common part of a hotel, the hall, the kitchen and the bar, the breakfast area and in the knowing that when you enter that hotel door you are now an individual who is however part of a community, that hotel staying community, forever together for that long weekend stay.
The chamber is an object made for all-year round travel. Made from pressed waste and exploited materials (such as cast rubber toilet and printed walls) it can be a shelter or it can be a luxury accommodation. Depends on your surrounding context.

Space Crystal

TEAM: Ángel Enrique Cuadrado González, Lucía Heras Molina

… “From the Earth to the Space: a special break” …
Human being has longed for since its origins surround itself with the stars in the sky, and contemplate what is surrounding from the perspective of the gods it adored.

With this premise here come new concepts of hotel, rest and room, which really comes true that cherished dream.
For that, It is designed a capsule that, outwardly, simulates the crystallization process of objects by the effect of cold temperature. Inside it harbor, on the one hand, the basic needs of a room (toilet area, rest area and views) and, on the other hand, the installations (divided into “regular use” and “emergency use”). These installations consist of an oxygen tank, a water tank and a waste tank (for regular use) plus an oxygen tank and a water tank (for emergency use). All with trapdoors to facilitate (when the capsule is on the ground and parked) emptying and refilling them.

The “living” dimensions of the capsule are 10 meters long, 3 meters wide and 3 meters high.

The upward and downward movements of the capsules are performed thanks to a “backpack” (engaged in one of the extremes) and over a vertical structure, which allows the user placed at the desired height. The mechanism is reduced to the combination of a pneumatic system using air at high pressure with valves in each tube, supported by a system of metal cables and pulleys that join each capsule to a piston.

This mechanism looks alike the systems used currently in the funfair around the world, but taken to the extreme and talking about kilometric heights (between 10 and 30 kilometers) to contemplate the Earth, its curvature and the Space.
Energy supply for the entire installation has been placed into orbit thanks to a solar photovoltaic installation and helium weather balloons.

Taking advantage of the boom and the technological advances that nowadays are emerging about the drones, each capsule has a support drone equipped with video cameras HD that monitor and ensure the integrity of the capsule and its members, and a survival kit consisting of food and tools to repair in case of accident.

Finally, the access to the capsule is made with a simple ladder and through a trapdoor in the bottom, located between the “backpack” and the tanks area.


TEAM: Andrea Siciliani, Eleonora Ghezzi, Giulia Marzocchi – La Sapienza

Awakening on a Roman terrace

A multitude of secret spaces, visible but inaccessible, are dotted across the city of Rome. Fluttering sheets animate the view of the rooftops, but nobody really lives in these places.
The project aims to rearticulate the way of traveling starting from the terraces and combining the microcosm of the inhabitants with the urban landscape dimension. Each place is characterized by its own genius loci that makes it unique and therefore makes the vacation itself unique. The proposal springs from a feature of the Roman landscape to develop a holiday that gives the opportunity for travelers to build a personal rela- tionship with the city and its residents, without any tourist-filter media- tion. It combines the possibility to stay in central locations with an unexpected outdoor holiday experience.

The reactivation of flat roofs unites the perspectives of tourist and resi- dent, generating new human relations at different scales. The inhabitant in fact takes an active part in the reception of travelers, without providing its own intimate space, but collaborating with the group of residences, for the development of a micro-economy. The hotel is therefore no longer perceived as a foreign body in the urban fabric, but sprawled and suspended on an unusual level, it creates another dimension that reflects and subverts the standard rules of living.

The “classic” housing units lifted on this unexperienced floor are synthe- sized in the fundamental acts of living: protection/delimitation, body care, nourishment, rest. The living archetypes are articulated in basic structu- res, replicable in several terrace typologies, for size and location. These volumes generate, from place to place, through different combinations various spatial qualities.

The fence, designed as a scenography changing through the seasons, constitutes the interface between the urban dimension and the specific architectural intervention, enhancing the dichotomous nature of the terrace. A space that always oscillates between outside and inside. This contrast is further emphasized by the relation between the light metal tubular structures, which belong to the imaginary of the garden, and the furniture brought on the terrace by the residents. The fence has also the function of delimiting the holy space of living and protecting it, so the architecture can open up.

Exchanging Experiencing

TEAM: Ana Patrícia Marcelo Pires, Maddalena Pornaro – FAUL, Politecnico di Milano

A Non-Hotel guide to the World
Tourism is an assertive shaper of the territory and of the way locals live within it and perceive it. The ailments of poorly managed spurs in tourism are no strangers to us and the territory’s loss of character and the locals’ loss of their sense of belonging have all too well been observed. This over specialization is also unsustainable for the industry that promotes it, as visitors aiming at having an immersive experience in the culture of the visited place find it increasingly harder to do so. All has been shaped into a neutral and ‘international’ set of experiences. For the visitor that doesn’t want to live a territory, a city, only from an observer’s point of view, this system is simply not enough.

It is in the context of these questions that a system dispersed throughout the territory is suggested. While diluting the services, the infrastructures that support tourism all along the city and avoiding a focalization on one centre, this structure of collaborations, experiences and sleep enables the visitor to not only get to know a wider extension of the territory, but also to get to know it in a deeper, more meaningful way. He thus takes part in the city’s daily life, contributing to it while being enriched by it.

Institutions that have the need for collaborators in long running projects, have in this way the opportunity to invite visitors to collaborate with them while in return providing them with a unique sleeping experience, being floating on water or lying under the stars while enveloped by a ruin. Locals and visitors interact and exchange knowledge, the territory sees its character preserved by the effort of both and shelters the best way it can the ones that temporarily or permanently live in it.

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