Terme Castel San Pietro Spa - Castel San Pietro (Bologna)

Surrounded by the silence of the woods

The restyling of the swimming pool and vascular circuit department at the Terme di Castel San Pietro spa centre fits in perfectly with the landscape
Elisa Montalti
Stefano Iseppi
Bertolini Prodi & c. Architetti Associati
Année de réalisation

The Terme di Castel San Pietro spa centre is located on the Via Emilia road between Bologna and Imola, set in large grounds with centuries-old trees at the foot the Bolognese hills. The presence of thermal waters at the location can be traced back to 1337, but it was not until 1870 that a large centre adopting a scientific approach to spa treatments was built. The centre, famous for its bromo-iodine and sulphurous salt waters, was destroyed by bombing during the Second World War, then rebuilt from scratch in 1955. Since then it has undergone a series of expansions and renovations. The latest work involved remodelling the swimming pool and vascular circuit department and the changing rooms to make them more comfortable and welcoming for guests. The practice Officio Architettura concentrated on the concept of well-being in the interior spaces, leaving the external envelope intact while following the same model that had previously been adopted for the inhalations department to create spaces that despite their diversity are clearly recognisable as belonging to a single project. Specifically, this involved designing a visually-striking water-themed corridor leading to the swimming pools and changing rooms, a kind of coloured tunnel illuminated by bubbles of natural light. The approximately 500 square metre pool area with its humid, sulphurous atmosphere was inspired by the Chiusa wood that can be seen from the large window. The jumble of trees and foliage is recreated inside by the large-size porcelain tiles supplied by Fondovalle. The Woods decoration from the Dream series is inspired by natural linen fibre and creates the sensation of being immersed in a natural, relaxing landscape. The 120×240 cm large-size porcelain tiles display fleeting traces of pristine woodland and have the intensity of an ever-changing work of art. As a result, nature establishes a presence within the building, creating a wallpaper effect with all the advantages of porcelain: waterproof, durable, tactile and easy to clean. The trees depicted on the slabs are reflected in the swimming pool, creating the sensation of a lake surrounded by woodland.
The changing rooms and bathrooms have an essential, clean and bright design suited to spaces devoted to personal care. The collection chosen for these spaces was Res Art, inspired by resin and featuring a slight relief texture further emphasised by the resonance of light. Laid in 120×240 cm and 60×120 cm sizes, the series alternates the more neutral tones of Talc and Mud with the brighter colours of Pottery, whose reddish tone recalls the clay origins of ceramics.
Architect Andrea Bertolini explained: « We chose large sizes not just for aesthetic reasons but also to reduce the number of joints, which always create problems in wet areas like this. The choice of a slab with a design impressed prior to high-temperature firing (thereby avoiding cold printing) is essential in aggressive environments like thermal baths, especially in the presence of bromo-iodine salt water as is the case at the Castel San Pietro thermal baths. »

Fondovalle, Dream and Res Art
porcelain stoneware
120x240 cm, 60x120 cm
Res Art: Pottery, Talc and Mud; Dream: Woods
Caractéristiques techniques
Water absorpion (ISO 10545-3): ≤ 0,1%
Chemical resistance (ISO 10545-13): DREAM: GA; GLA; GHA - RES ART: UA; ULA; UHB
Resistance to deep abrasion (ISO 10545-6): ≤ 130 mm3
Stain resistance (ISO 10545-14): compliant
Frost resistance (ISO 10545-12): compliant
Modulus of rupture and breaking strength (ISO 10545-4): ≥ 50 N/mm2
Slip resistance (DIN 51130): DREAM: R10 - RES ART: R9
Thermal shock resistance (ISO 10545-9): compliant
Crazing resistance (ISO 10545-11): compliant
Linear thermal expansion (ISO 10545-8): compliant
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