The Space bears the unmistakeable handwriting of the designer Nico Ueberholz. The architecture comes alive by playing with light and shadow; it surprises the viewer and looks different from every angle. The outer shell is completely covered with fully reflective Alucobond panels. This means that its natural surroundings, consisting of an extensive garden and a fountain as well as the sky with its wind and weather phenomena, are all reflected by the shell like camouflage, making the new building become a part of the landscape. The Space as a material object is hidden behind the reflection, yet its intrinsic sculptural effect provides some contrast of its own. With its illuminated outlines, the matt-finished interior looks like a cube that has been pushed in. LED lighting running along the walls strengthens the illusion of a joint and the inner space seems to be floating in mid-air.
The interior welcomes visitors with a light installation pulsating between warm white and cold white, simultaneously playing with the reflections from the glazing. The fully glazed south side, large skylights and floor-to-ceiling windows make the natural environment a part of the interior. In combination with a lofty 3.60 m room height and acoustic ceilings, a grounded atmosphere of calm is created, which releases energy and enhances creativity. “The purpose of our concept is to offer a place for living, breathing in deeply and thinking freely”, explains Katja Ueberholz, proprietor of the mindfulness coaching company Ueberholz Reset. “We make a point of offering a spatial experience – there’s already an abundance of normal event locations. The best compliment a customer paid us was saying that this room was magical.”
Thanks to modern building technology from Gira, which was programmed by Busche Elektrotechnik, the brightly lit room can be filled with shadows, and numerous spotlights and ceiling spots in varying colours can be freely adapted to suit individual needs.
This is based on the KNX system, which connects all relevant building technology components with each other in the background, such as heating, access control, lighting and blinds, water supply technology and the Bose surround-sound system. The central control unit is a powerful
Gira HomeServer 4, which gathers and processes all data and then distributes the appropriate commands to the various actuators. It is easy to operate via the Gira Control 19 Client display installed in the wall and its little brother, the Gira Control 9 Client. Alternatively, the Gira HomeServer app can transfer the operation to a tablet or smartphone, which also enables on-site operation. In this way, the shading or lighting can easily be adjusted during a seminar without having to get up.
Pre-defined scenes recorded in the system make operation even easier. The settings for ‘workshop’, ‘presentation’, ‘event’, ‘lecture’, ‘training session’ and ‘meditation’ can be called up at a single touch. During a lecture, for instance, the speaker stands in the spotlight, while the room lighting is dimmed; during a workshop, the tables are lit up, and the smartboard is highlighted. The 87-inch screen is able to perform a total of three different functions: It can act as a PC, and as a digital and analogue smartboard. Via the wall displays and the iPad, not only the lighting, but also the shading, temperature control, outdoor and pathway lighting, and sockets can be activated. One particularly valuable energy-efficiency feature is the ‘central on’ and ‘central off’ functions, which automatically deactivate all sources of light after the room has been used. “It’s very convenient that I can also control these functions from my mobile phone. After our guests have left the building, I can use the cameras to check whether everything is in order and, if necessary, switch off the lights and roll up the blinds”, says Katja Ueberholz. Parallel to the modern operating system, there are also traditional switches in the Gira E2 design, which fit in with the architecture’s clear design vocabulary.
To let users enter the Space, Katja Ueberholz can allocate codes with which the electric gate and the 3.60-metre-high front door of the Space can be opened during pre-defined periods of time. These codes expire afterwards. “And I can also allocate and transmit these codes ad hoc during business meetings from abroad”, says Katja Ueberholz delightedly. A visually attractive reception is provided by the elegant Gira System 106 door communication system made of stainless steel. Thanks to a video function, the Ueberholz team can always see who is standing outside the front door and they can gain access via the Gira fingerprint system. Last but not least: The garden is also watered via KNX. To this end, moisture sensors and a Gira weather station are connected to the system. When the weather is dry with no rain in sight, the outdoor areas are watered fully automatically.