Neolith by TheSize has refurbished the the Lariza Building in Tres Cantos, Madrid, Spain, bringing the 1970’s build into the 21st century.
Architect Héctor Ruiz-Velázquez specified Neolith by TheSize for the interior stairway and bathrooms, as well as the outer walls and stairways of the office building. The end result is quality aesthetics that remains sustainable, energy efficient, and attentive to the employees’ needs.
With overwhelming evidence linking office design with occupants’ health, wellbeing and productivity, Hector’s team focused on the effects of light and materials to ensure the comfort of the employee is never compromised. Combined with Hector’s affirmation that ‘spaces have to provide shelter as well as catch the visitor’s eye’, he opted for an interior design that was not just concerned with quality and functionality, but also oozed warmth and personality.
A growing architectural technique to create interiors which encourage cognitive activity whilst remaining comfortable is the rise of biophilia; the suggestion that we have an instinctive bond to nature.
Ruiz-Velázquez said: "Specifying Basalt Black and Arena from the Neolith Fusion collection enabled the colours and the sensations of nature in the products to be transferred to the surfaces in live form. Arena, with its parallel traits to natural limestone and its random game of light and dark veins, in conjunction with Basalt Black models that offer an organic colour and texture to mirror natural basalt stones, allowed for a delicate interpretation of biophillic design.
"Connecting spaces to merge the outside with the inside, and ensuring the entrance provides the building with a connecting arrival, was of vital significance to the design. To link the space we are coming from to the space we are going to ensures continuity and avoids the sense of breaking a space up.
"For The Lariza Building, using 3.6m x 1.2m Neolith slabs for the main interior stairway created a spectacular visual extension which showed the remarkable features of the adaptable Neolith and brought facets of nature inside."
Specifying the Neolith Fusion collection was not just an artistic decision but a conscious effort at sustainability.
Hector mentions: "When specifying a material, it should be first of all functional and secondly, aesthetically pleasing. Quality is the most important condition of a material and Neolith offers maximum strength and resistance. The structure of the outer walls and staircases were the perfect place for the material because it is a space full of natural light.
"Additionally, Neolith responds perfectly to temperature changes and humidity and it resists all of these factors better than other materials which do not stay intact and tend to lose colour."
There is a fine line when creating a remarkable design with sustainable quality in office builds. At the Lariza Building, the two have been joined in complete harmony. For Hector, using materials that adhere to the needs of the employees, as well as the building owners, meant he was able to create an all-round building that could boost work productivity, remain artistically significant and withstand the test of climate.
Building something beautiful is key, but as Hector comments: "Sustainability is not a commercial label, it is the professional responsibility of us all."