Architecture

Bizarre treehouse surrounds hotel guests with feathery friends

Bizarre treehouse surrounds ho...
Biosphere is being created for the Treehotel project in Sweden, which showcases several bespoke hotel rooms by some of Scandinavia's most respected architects
Biosphere is being created for the Treehotel project in Sweden, which showcases several bespoke hotel rooms by some of Scandinavia's most respected architects
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Biosphere will be accessed by using a suspended bridge
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Biosphere will be accessed by using a suspended bridge
Biosphere is being created for the Treehotel project in Sweden, which showcases several bespoke hotel rooms by some of Scandinavia's most respected architects
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Biosphere is being created for the Treehotel project in Sweden, which showcases several bespoke hotel rooms by some of Scandinavia's most respected architects
Biosphere will be suspended from the pine trees
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Biosphere will be located in a remote forested location in Swedish Lapland
Biosphere will feature a mostly glazed facade, broken up by the birdhouses
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Biosphere will feature a mostly glazed facade, broken up by the birdhouses
Biosphere's snug interior will measure 34 sq m (365 sq ft)
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Biosphere's snug interior will measure 34 sq m (365 sq ft)
Biosphere's 350 birdhouses will be different sizes to suit different types of birds
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Biosphere's 350 birdhouses will be different sizes to suit different types of birds
Biosphere's interior will include a lounge area, as well as a loft bedroom and a bathroom
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Biosphere's interior will include a lounge area, as well as a loft bedroom and a bathroom
View gallery - 7 images

The Bjarke Ingels Group (BIG) has produced more than its fair share of out-of-the-box designs, but the firm's latest project is one of its most unusual in some time. Looking a bit like a large round pinecone among the trees, the Biosphere will consist of a small treehouse-style hotel room with an exterior that's covered in 350 birdhouses.

Biosphere has the look of one of those projects that'll never actually be realized, but it is indeed being created for the Treehotel project in Swedish Lapland, near the Arctic Circle. The site showcases bespoke hotel rooms by some of Scandinavia's most respected architects, such as Snöhetta and Tham & Videgård. BIG's contribution is designed in collaboration with Treehotel's organizers, as well as Swedish ornithologist Ulf Öhman.

The retreat will be raised above the ground using existing pine trees in the remote forested site and will be accessed by a suspended bridge. It will feature a mostly glazed exterior, which will be broken up by the wooden birdhouses of varying size and shape, carefully chosen to be suitable for different types of birds.

The interior will measure a snug 34 sq m (365 sq ft) and is reminiscent of BIG's A45 tiny house with its tasteful dark hues and carefully considered space-saving furniture. It will include a sofa and hammock chair on the ground floor, as well as a bathroom and basic kitchenette, while a mezzanine bedroom will be accessed by ladder.

Biosphere's interior will include a lounge area, as well as a loft bedroom and a bathroom
Biosphere's interior will include a lounge area, as well as a loft bedroom and a bathroom

One potential issue is that all those birds will presumably mean a lot of bird poop nearby too, but BIG has looked into it and expects the exterior to remain mostly clean.

"I got to spend a few days and nights in some of the Treehotel rooms right before the pandemic, and left with a sense of rejuvenation from complete immersion into nature," said BIG founder Bjarke Ingels. "I couldn't help wondering if there was a way to take the immersion one step further – and almost instantly the idea of inviting not only the human visitors but also the resident bird and bat population to cohabit a spherical swarm of nests came to life. After our first conversations with Ulf Öhman from Norrbotten Ornithological Association we were relieved to learn that birds don't drop where they nest – so there is hope for the glass to remain clear within this cloud of aviary architecture."

Biosphere is expected to be completed and open for visitors later this year, when it will cost SEK12,000 (roughly US$1,260) per night, including breakfast for two.

Source: BIG

View gallery - 7 images
4 comments
4 comments
Bob Flint
Birds, & glass don't go well together, neither do they like nesting near humans....
GregVoevodsky
Ever try to sleep in an aviary or the jungle? It's not quite. Hopefully, they don't have screaming monkeys too.
Spud Murphy
Really bad idea. Sure, they don't poo in their nest, but they do poo just outside it, so there will be poo all over this thing. Plus, birds don't just poo, they produce lots of dust and dander from shedding skin flakes, quill sheaths etc, all of which will contain some level of pathogens. Completely surrounding yourself with wild birds and their mess is about as stupid an idea as I've heard in a long time and shows a complete lack of experience with birds of any type. I should qualify that we rescue birds here, but mostly chooks and ducks, but our property also attracts myriad wild birds, and they can make a hell of a mess.
Jack Cade
Oh deary deary me, they are going to make a very nasty discovery when they try to sleep here! Birds almost always have parasites, nasty little crawly things that live on them. Lots and lots of them, several different types. These parasites often explore the areas around nests, looking for new opportunities. Even a single wild bird's nest close to a human bedroom can cause a very nasty situation. Many years ago I recall a friend having to leave his flat while it was fumigated to get rid of the parasites infesting the bedrooms from birds nests under the eaves. With 350 nesting boxes in close proximity... it will be a pretty itchy place to stay!