Europe will soon have its first underwater restaurant. The construction will include a 12 meter wide panoramic window and is designed to become part of the marine environment. The restaurant will be completed in 2019, being located at the southernmost point of the Norwegian coast.
The design of the restaurant is the work of the well-known Norwegian architecture firm Snøhetta, known for its spectacular earlier projects, such as the Norwegian Opera House or the Alexandrina Library in Egypt. The restaurant, called “Under”, will be at a depth of five meters, with thick walls, capable of withstanding the warmest weather conditions. “One of the spectacular effects of this building is how it connects nature and surface, and how you can get in a very dramatic way through this cement tube to the nature and marine life of the sea and experience which normally can not be experienced, “Rune Grasdal, chief architect of this project, told CNN.
The restaurant will have three levels and a capacity of 100 seats. Under the entrance there will be a champagne bar that marks the transition between the coast and the ocean. At the top level will be the main restaurant hall, dominated by the 12 meter wide acrylic window. Grasdal, who likened the building to a periscope, said one of the most important things for him was for people to feel safe. For this project, the architects team took into account several elements, such as natural materials used as oak wood, and the existing brightness. “Those who come here will have a thrilling experience, but equally important, they must feel safe,” Grasdal said.
Environmental considerations have also played a role in this project, the concrete body of the building being in turn covered with a material that will allow shells to be attached to fully integrate the structure into the marine ecosystem.