Stirring Silhouette: The Sempachersee Golf Club Project

Project Details:

  • Client: Largura AG, Sempach
  • Architect: Smolenicky & Partner Architektur GmbH, Zurich
  • Construction management: Aluba AG, Flaach
  • Roofer: Benno Erni GmbH, Wiesendangen
  • Clay roof tiles used: Plano smooth adjustable tile natural red ZZ Wancor (Wienerberger Switzerland)
  • Photos: Oliver Ernst


The Story Behind:

The Sempachersee golf course, located about 15 kilometres from Lucerne, was recently extended with a second 18-hole course, making it the largest golf course in Switzerland in terms of area. In conjunction with this expansion, the Zurich-based architect’s office of Smolenicky & Partner was instructed to erect two new buildings: a clubhouse with restaurant and the new building yard. The room layout and maximum volume of the new builds was not to exceed those of the demolished old buildings. The clubhouse was placed on a slope in the terrain where the flat plateau of the golf course transitions to a steeply sloping drop. This is where the wide view of the Sempachersee and the Alps behind it opens up.



Architectural Significance:

In the clubhouse of the Sempachersee Golf Club, traditional materials blend with a new design that corresponds to the building’s purpose. With its expressive silhouette, it is impressive how exceedingly modern a conventional covering with clay roof tiles can be. The aim of the architecture was to blend the old, rustic and agricultural culture with the sophisticated lifestyle of golf culture to create a new entity. The materials used, including a wood façade and tiled roof, therefore correspond with the traditional. However, despite the use of traditional materials, the new build awakens an impression of dynamism and speed. The shape of the roof follows the two yards, vaults over the kitchen area and covers the lake-facing conference rooms. Surfaces with different inclines run into each other at different angles. The roof was covered with natural red smooth adjustable clay tiles up to an angle of just 12 degrees. Only one of the abutting faces was too flat and could not be executed as a tiled roof. Instead, a standing seam panel roof was installed. It is the steep roof that gives the building it height, despite being only one-storey tall, thereby lifting the club house out of the landscape. All chimneys and exhaust installations were recessed into the clerestory. This created a pure and undisturbed roof line and a little of the initially desired flair of a grand hotel.

Authored by a Building Expert from Wienerberger India

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