Phillip Denny

Sako Lake Baths

Material Tectonics Studio.
Proposal for a Spa in Crawford Notch, NH.

The Bath project investigates the role of the building envelope as mediator between environment and spatial experience. The user encounters a series of spaces in which the relationships between self, architecture, and exterior condition are transformed.

The hiker’s first impression of the spa is of an excavated monolith, an outcropping of rock in the forested hillside. A long bridge provides a singular pathway between natural and constructed environment, reinforcing the architecture’s role as experiential mediator. Upon entering, the user moves downward through the building, confronting a series of spatial episodes within a concrete structure loosely-bound by a gabion envelope. The user finds the lowest level inundated with water, a grotto space in which one is alternately isolated from, and exposed to the environment. A pair of light wells illuminate the baths while simultaneously inviting the climate into the lowest depths of the building.