Award of Merit: Tremblant Bar-Pavilion

Mont-Tremblant, Quebec
Le Groupe Arcop

This bar-pavilion will be located on a south-facing terrace of the Fairmont Chteau Mont-Tremblant, a resort about 130 kilometres north of Montreal. The slope is 300 metres to the east of the site, which also gives onto a stair leading to the village centre. The bar is on axis with the ski slope. Intended for use during warmer months, the bar-pavilion was commissioned as a means of engendering a multi-seasonal hotel identity. A free-standing 9 9 box clad with exterior grade plywood impregnated with a deep red water-resistant stain floats within an 11 11 translucent glass rainscreen-type enclosure that is suspended from an independent steel framework. Glass panels are constructed of variably-sized hinged components which allow access for cleaning in addition to air circulation around the inner wooden box. Certain panels pivot open to reveal the inner red box.

The front door folds up and the bar extends outward in order to create a covered service zone separate from the interior work area. When the bar is closed, the boxes fold back in and allow the functionality to give way to the imagination. During the day, the box contains only a pale shadow beneath an ice-white enclosure. As evening approaches, the cavity between the two boxes is artificially lit and produces an ephemeral red glow. The glow of this lantern-like volume underscores the pavilion’s function in the warmer season and expresses the client’s desire to alternate the pavilion’s outward identity and its relationship with the village centre during the spring and summer months.

Boutin: Although small in scale, the design offers much in terms of how it can be utilized and the degree to which it offers amenity, both in the open and closed forms. The project also suggests an interesting and profitable intersection between architecture, signage, and industrial design.

Rosenberg: This is a clever and unconventional solution to an issue that affects Canada: how to accommodate the seasonal nature of a space that is overflowing with activity in one season and empty the next.

Sherman: Though this project couldn’t be more simple, its ambitions are subtle but sophisticated. We were all taken with the idea of a building that could respond to seasonal change the way nature does: opening out in the summer months, and closed up in the winter. What’s important here, though, is that just because it closes up doesn’t mean it disappears. On the contrary: the spectacle of this “ice cube,” as we call it, on a winter night seems altogether intentional and -propos. And I like the abstraction with which the cube’s construction is rendered, so that any tectonic expression is suppressed in favor of its metaphorical effect.

Client: Fairmont Chteau Mont-Tremblant

Architect team: Robert LaPierre, Bruce Allan, Quinlan Osborne

Structural: EBP Structural Engineers

Area: 121 sq. ft.

Budget: $100,000

Completion: spring 2004

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