Reconstruction and Addition of Hotel Palace

Portorož, Slovenia, 2005


invited competition

Istrabenz hoteli Portorož, hotelirstvo in turizem

developing riviera, Portorož

Site area
6.163 m2

Building area
5.730 m2

Total floor area
21.337 m2

basement + ground floor + mezzanine + 4 + attic

174 hotel rooms and apartments, wellness, restaurant, bar

old building: existing brick and stone construction + reinforced concrete + wooden roof construction, new building: precast and concrete structure

old building: existing facade + ventilated facade, new building: structural glazing

SADAR+VUGA (Jurij Sadar, Boštjan Vuga, Goran Golubič, Aleksander Lalić, Adrian Petrucelli, Tina Hočevar, Ines Schmid, Katharina Schendl, John Paul Americo, Rune Boserup, Lucijan Šifrer, Susana Gaivoto, Ricardo Pires, Tomaž Krištof)

The building of the old Palace Hotel has been closed for two decades. Constructed as a “grand hotel” at a typical seaside swimming and spa town at the beginning of the 20th century, it embodied the apex of Portorož tourism until the second world war.

How to increase the old hotel building with a new part without the latter looking as a mere annexe, an inferior and less desired part of the complex? How to create a rounded-off building without upstaging the old hotel palace building with a competing addition, but rather to attune the two in terms of visual characteristics, content and programming?

The renovation and new construction are based on a “green embrace”, a greened constructive grid that determines the volume of the prism of the new building on the eastern side of the old hotel palace, continues into the pergola and roof of the connection between the old and the new building and the entrance part, delineates the volume of the northern addition of the convention part, and winds on as pergola above the promenade at the edge of the historical western part all the way to the coast road.

The greened constructive grid acts as a constructed element, tuning the old building with the new volume, but also as a park element, creating a soft buffer between the historical park, the mediterranean greenery and the new promenade on the eastern side.

The greened constructive grid thus appears as if growing into and merging with the “green embrace”, a linking element between the natural and the man-made. The grid is greened with evergreen jasmine, which creates a unique palace hotel fragrance with its white blooms during the blooming season.

The prism is designed to contract towards the top and break along the long sides, thus growing narrower towards the front side. This way the entire new building moves away from the old hotel and visually opens up towards the sea.