With the aim to create a new thermal water space in the pre-existing building of the Termes Victòria Spa Hotel in Caldes de Montbui, we proposed to enter the spaces created about 250 years ago, and used historically for the reservoir of the original thermal water and of the cooled thermal water for the use mainly curative and well-being of people. Its function of deposits had always left them hidden to the visitor and their discovery was key to deciding that it was a captivating place to show and to convert it as a unique space for the enjoyment of the senses. In the spaces of the old deposits and also partly in the traditional bath gallery, the different swimming pools have been located, each with some characteristic different from the other, but all of them created for the purpose of relaxing and enjoying the mineral-medicinal properties of the thousand year old thermal water.
With the will of being as neutral as possible, we chose to preserve the footprint of the different historical periods that the space has experienced. The original stone, the phase of the walls covered with the conservation of the water mark and the current period in which contemporary elements and materials can clearly be read. The white stone that covers most of the surfaces brings us the memory of the bathtubs still today in use in the traditional thermal spa. Especially intense and interesting for our team and also for the property was the whole process of discovery, data collection, writing of the project, the work and the study of all the sensory factors.
The peculiarity is that at the moment that we decided to work inside, the deposits are still in use and they are full of water. This forced us to make very accurate data in a very short time, knowing that we would not be able to access there again after one year, at the beginning of the works. During the writing of the project we also discovered the existence of a large stream that collects much of the waters of Caldes and runs exactly below the main gallery, and on which one of the main vessels has been located. Finally, the execution, while the hotel building was in full use, forced us to carry out with a very careful coordination to minimize the negative effects of the work on the users of the establishment. In the final result it can be perceived all this intensity and care in the works and in the details, and it is a space that invites you to see it but especially to live it.
Pictures by Ferran Robusté Cumplido for archdaily