The new Longroiva Hotel & Thermal Spa flows between history and modernity

A colourful narrative in Portugal's landscape.

LONGROIVA – The small village of Longroiva in north Portugal has around 300 inhabitants at the last count in 2011. What Longroiva also has, is a historic thermal bath. Lisbon-based Rebelo de Andrade Architectural Design & Studio has renovated a nineteenth century thermal spa building which together with additional extensions forms the Longroiva Hotel & Thermal Spa.

Old and new has been seamlessly connected with a colourful narrative in tones ranging from rust red to burgundy. The original building profits from a cladding of dark shiny tiles, elegantly contrasting with the existing stonework, light and raw in colour. While the lower floor is completely dedicated to dining and social activities, the upper levels have been redeveloped to house 17 rooms. The interior, like the exterior, is framed by heavy stone floors and features modern additions in earthy colours bringing a contemporary freshness without overpowering the historic appeal.

The swimming pool behind the main house serves as a link between old and new, in the background a row of mono-pitched roofs links to the horizon. With outer walls made of varnished wood, the new volumes fit the brownish-red colour scheme perfectly. And to complete the complementary experience, cantilevered terraces are clad with the same shiny tiles as the main building. Together, the main house and bungalows tell a success story of modernity and tradition while  fusioning the natural and the built. On the inside, the use of local materials has resulted in coherent and harmonious colour schemes – with one surprise: OSB. Even though the material has plenty of advantages and a – rightly so – steeply rising following, a local cork tree’s harvest would have made a more consequent appearance in this case. 

Photos FG + SG

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