Grand Hyatt tower by UNStudio



Dutch architect Ben van Berkel of UNStudio has won a competition to design a tower that will house the Grand Hyatt Hotel in Frankfurt, Germany.


The facade of the 110 metre tower will appear to change shape depending on the angle from which it is viewed.


"It appears needle-thin from one spot, strong and straight from another, and complex with a slight twist from yet another,” says van Berkel.

The following information is from UNStudio:


UNStudio/ Ben van Berkel’s design selected for new hotel tower in Frankfurt

Yesterday, UNStudio was selected in the competition for a 110 meter tall hotel tower.

From the six projects presented, the jury, chaired by Prof. Johann Eisele, chose the designs by UNStudio - Ben van Berkel (Amsterdam), and Kohn, Pedersen, Fox (New York) and recommended proceeding with the UNStudio design for further development.

According to Ben van Berkel the design for the Grand Hyatt tower celebrates and highlights the cosmopolitan character and diversity of Frankfurt. ‘It has three different elevations that are linked to the different aspects of the city. The tower takes up the variation and diversity offered by the city of Frankfurt and reflects that multiplicity of experiences back to the city itself. The tower can be perceived differently from each perspective; it appears needle-thin from one spot, strong and straight from another, and complex with a slight twist from yet another.”

The new tower will house a 5-star-plus hotel with 405 rooms and suites, a ballroom, spa, various restaurants, a lobby bar and a public Sky Lounge on the top floor, and the possibility of an adjacent congress center. The hotel tower consists of 30 floors at a height of approximately 110 metres and an area of 54,562.70 m2 for hotel tower + plinth.

The new hotel will be located opposite the currently emerging high-rise office Tower 185. The first building to be realized in Frankfurt's Europaviertel was the Mövenpick Hotel. Along with a number of apartments and office buildings a second hotel, the Meininger Hotel, is currently under construction.

As part of a multiple assignment, yesterday six architects presented their ideas for the approximately 110-meter-high hotel tower. Other offices which presented their designs were Ingenhoven Architects (Dusseldorf), JSK Architects (Frankfurt), Lederer, Ragnarsdottir, Oei (Stuttgart) and Reichel Stauth + Architects (Brunswick). The jury consisted of: Councillor Edwin Schwarz (City of Frankfurt), Bernhard H. Hansen (Vivico), Prof. Jochem Jourdan (Jourdan & Müller PAS), Prof. Uwe Frerichs (Bielefeld University), Anne Geier Mann (Hyatt) and Matthias Lowin (Viador).

All of the designs will be exhibited from the 20th until the 27th May 2009 in the foyer of the Technical Town Hall of the City of Frankfurt (Braubachstrasse 15, Monday to Friday, 08:00 to 18:00 clock).

The jury chairman Prof. Eisele pointed out: "All the proposals were of an exceptionally high standard. The award-winning designs by UNStudio and Kohn, Pedersen Fox are particularly outstanding as they present a type of high-rise which does not yet exist in this form in Frankfurt. The contribution by UNStudio demonstrates how harmony can be created between extensive functional demands and the high requirements of exterior and interior design."

According to Mr. Schwarz the designs are very well integrated into the urban planning of the new neighborhood: "With this exceptional high-rise the new project will provide the entrance area of the Europe district with a very visible accent."

Bernhard H. Hansen said: "An architectural language has been found that responds to the high demands of the Grand Hyatt account whilst simultaneously integrating perfectly into the neighborhood."

The new Grand Hyatt, as part of the ensemble Skyline Plaza, marks the entrance of the Europe Allee, with its impact stretching along Oslo street in a North-South direction. With the new hotel tower, 1,000 beds of different categories will be available in the Europe District. The Europe District is growing rapidly: The first residential building will be completed in spring 2009, with two more to follow in 2010. Overall, in the first phase approximately 780 houses are planned. The construction of the first office building, headquarters of the Germany bank BNP Paribas, started in the autumn of 2008 and will be realized mid-2010. The four-star Mövenpick Hotel Frankfurt City was realized in 2006. In February 2008 Vivico closed a lease contract with the Berlin hotel group Meininger. The new hotel at the entrance of the Torhause is also already under construction and will be opened in 2010.

At the entrance of the European quarter, at the Friedrich-Ebert-Anlage, Vivico has been building the Tower 185 since September 2008; the first skyscraper at this location. Before construction began Vivico closed a contract for approximately 60,000 m_ of rental space with the accountancy firm PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC).

Posted on Thursday May 21st 2009 at 3:19 pm by . Copyright policy | Comments policy

  • Marky Mark

    I love u Zaha !!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • windbag

    there is a general feeling of german boredom to it.

  • Son of Bozo

    Fair enough,
    But the renders are a bit ordinary Jack

  • smarch

    I like it.It’s clear.
    Not too crazy, nor dull (like most of the frankfurt buildings).
    Would like to see the program diagrams though.

  • Katsudon

    Is it me or the organic gestures seems not have any logical spine here? I don’t like UN projects anyway although i like their work about graphism… But visual effects doesn’t make a whole project isn’t it?
    At least in the early Zaha’s work, there was something standing strong about energy or surrounding forces lines. I wonder sometimes if it’s not Zaha doing it UN style now.
    (sorry for my poor english by the way)

  • ste

    well 1st of all i like UNstudio… i think mercedes musuem is one of the most (if not the one) sophisticated building in post modern architecture… but to be honest this thing looks so boring! some stylish lines on a vertical structure… coulb be a pc tower or a spaceship or anything… no feeling for scale and human behaviour in this picture! i would liek to see drawings or pics from the inside perhaps there are some hidden spatial qualities which makes me see the worth of this project! actually i’m really dissapointed by UNS!

  • vizoo

    Signature architecture, congratz to the team . The slight wall curving really adds to the project much.

  • Nia

    I think we have to see the broader context.
    It’s Frankfurt with Bank Towers which means
    it is a rather conservative environment plus
    there is a investor taking a couple of Million
    Euro in their hands to build a tower. Keeping
    that in mind I think the architect has to balance between
    “fancy” design and satisfiying clients’ wishes for an efficient building
    (which actually should not exclude each other).
    I can see this tower really being built in
    opposition to some other Dubai-Moscow Render stuff.
    So, great and especially smart work UNStudio.

  • justin

    Program diagrams? But that you presumably mean plans?

  • zee

    The UN studio are just a more sober version of Zaha Hadid

  • nick

    Justin – By that you mean “By that”???????

    Program diagrams are an important part of establishing the horizontal stratifications and implications of an idea.


  • lmnop

    @nick: program diagrams have become the generative architectural element, its too strict

  • ste

    ti nia

    agree to the restrictions by context in frankfurt… but to be honest if it goes down to only design a fancy facade then these curves are not exactly what i would expect… is it just me or does i want to have more meaning in form than just stylish lines? well… perhaps there is more but we cant judge without diagrams or plans! imho its not that beautiful