"People want Stockholm to be a low city"
- Josefin Larsson on Victoria Tower

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World Architecture Festival 2012: in this movie we filmed, architect Josefin Larsson of Wingårdhs tells Dezeen editor-in-chief Marcus Fairs how the residents of Stockholm want it to be a "low city", but that her studio's controversial high-rise hotel there is a "real midget" compared to the skyscrapers of Singapore, where the World Architecture Festival took place.

Victoria Tower by Wingardh Arkitektkontor

Above: photograph is by Ola Fogelström

The Victoria Tower, which won the award in the hotel and leisure category, stands at 117 metres in height. "It's a controversial subject in Sweden because there aren't that many high buildings," says Larsson, as she explains how it was a dream of both architect Gert Wingårdh and hotel-owner Arthur Buchardt to build a tower.

Victoria Tower by Wingardh Arkitektkontor

Above: photograph is by Åke E:son Lindman

She explains how Europe tends to "stick to the scale of their historical buildings" but that this building was designed to be "a landmark" that can be seen from afar.

Victoria Tower by Wingardh Arkitektkontor

Above: photograph is by Åke E:son Lindman

Behind the tessellated facade of coloured glass, the building contains 300 guest rooms and was designed for Scandinavian chain Scandic Hotels. Larsson describes the rooms as "not luxury, fairly small" but with "good food and good locations".

Victoria Tower by Wingardh Arkitektkontor

Above: photograph is by Tord-Rikard Söderström

We've filmed a series of interviews with award winners at the World Architecture Festival, which we’re publishing over the next few days. See all the movies so far, including our interview with architect Chris Wilkinson about the World Building of the Year.

See all our stories about WAF 2012 »

  • bill

    Last time I checked, scale was a contextual issue. If everything is low-rise, then a mid-rise tower will seem much larger than a tall tower in a sea of tall towers. Bah.