In the heart of Novy Urengoy, VOX Architects Studio has brought an element of the mesmerizing night sky to a terrestrial setting. The ‘Solar Wind’ business lounge at the airport, a recent project by architects Boris Voskoboynikov and Maria Akhremenkova, offers passengers a glimpse of the enchanting aurora borealis right within the confines of the terminal.
Solar Wind Business Lounge Technical Information
- Architects1-2: VOX Architects
- Location: Novy Urengoy, Russia
- Client: Airports of Regions
- Area: 358,7m²
- Completion Year: 2023
- Photographs: © Dmitry Chebanenk
The VOX Architects team reinterpreted this significant drawback and, with the help of an airy architectural volume, turned the dense darkness into the mystery of the polar night with shimmering ‘Northern Lights’.
Solar Wind Business Lounge Photographs
Embracing the Aurora: VOX Architects’ ‘Solar Wind’
This novel design strategy was borne out of a seeming disadvantage – the lounge’s first-floor location lacks windows for panoramic views of the flight strips. However, the architects saw this as an opportunity and ingeniously transformed this space into a vivid representation of the polar night, resplendent with shimmering “Northern Lights.”
VOX Architects team, including Yana Mitasova, Alina Epifanova, Svetlana Gunina, Ekaterina Novik, Olga Telpiz, and Pavel Surshkov, designed an architectural installation that does more than just decorate. It zones the space, facilitates passenger flow, and crafts private zones for comfortable waiting before boarding a flight, becoming an ergonomic and artistic planning solution.
The aurora borealis, as depicted in the lounge, features ribbon-like canvases of aluminum chains suspended from a nearly seven-meter ceiling. These curtains of metal encircle a central column, and with strategically placed lighting, cast a spellbinding illusion of the Northern Lights within the hall.
Upon entering the lounge, passengers are welcomed by a reception desk, followed by a bar and catering area. Hanging lamps provide warmth and rhythm to the space. Cozy niches in warm sunny colours offer quiet corners to retreat to while waiting for a flight.
For the passengers who want a quick bite or drink, the café and bar are readily accessible, divided by an airy curtain of aluminum chains from a central island. Convenient charging stations, cozy armchairs, sofa-alcoves made of noise-absorbing materials, and adjustable floor lamps contribute to a relaxing, comfortable atmosphere.
Further adding to the functionality and aesthetics, there are private alcoves along the walls separated by frosted glass partitions. These spots offer an intimate environment for those who seek solitude amidst the busy airport.
What makes the ‘Solar Wind’ project truly unique is VOX Architects’ underlying concept of embodying a visual image characteristic of the specific project’s context. For this project, the aurora borealis became the key visual solution, owing to its frequent occurrence in the permafrost regions.
This inspiration translated into cascading architectural volumes of aluminum chains that mimic ribbons of light pulsating in the night sky, just like the aurora. The subtle coloring of the metal threads, combined with linear light tubes, helps achieve a stunningly realistic effect of the northern lights’ radiant shimmer.
The lounge’s atmosphere is further intensified by dark walls lined with stemalite, creating an illusion of an expansive, mysterious space. Ceiling lights dotted across the lounge complete the image of a starry night sky, while warmer shades of built-in contour lights evoke the Sun’s role in creating the aurora borealis.
The ‘Solar Wind’ business lounge goes beyond being just a waiting area for passengers; it provides an immersive, unforgettable experience of a unique natural phenomenon. As passengers prepare for their journey, they get to partake in the magic of the polar night and the northern lights, making their stay at the Novy Urengoy airport a memorable encounter with the ethereal beauty of nature.
With the successful implementation of the project in 2023, VOX Architects continues to leave a significant mark on architectural design by incorporating the beauty and mystery of natural phenomena into functional spaces.
Solar Wind Business Lounge Image Gallery
About VOX Architects
VOX Architects, led by Chief Architect Boris Voskoboynikov and Creative Head Maria Akhremenkova, is a transformative architectural studio that interprets human existence into the language of architecture. Their projects analyze lifestyle and deliver spatial solutions that are both structurally innovative and rich in meaning. The firm is known for invigorating spaces with energy and narrative, bringing dreams to life through a conscious emphasis on openness, freedom, and the creation of new meanings. Their work transcends traditional decor and size, focusing instead on abundant space and infinity as a lifestyle.
Notes & Additional Credits
- Project Architects: Bris Voskoboynikov, Maria Akhremenkova
- Project Team: Yana Mitasova, Alina Epifanova, Svetlana Gunina, Ekaterina Novik, Olga Telpiz, Pavel Surshkov