As part of the revitalisation of the city centre of Spanish city Bilbao, in spring 2010 the former wine and spirits warehouse “La Alhóndiga” changed into a new media centre. The revitalisation of the historic building is an urban regeneration initiative led by French architect and designer Philippe Starck.
For the conversion of the old wine factory, the contractors used mainly bricks on the inner and outer façades. CRH Clay Solutions produced custom-made prefabricated components for the project façade. Read more about the custom-made prefabricated components for the Bilbao project.
Covering an area of 43,000 m2, the building gives the city of Bilbao, as well as its inhabitants and visiting tourists, a wide variety of cultural and leisure facilities. The building is divided into three dice-shaped sections, in which visitors will find various educational, spa and entertainment facilities. As well as a gallery, cinema and media library, this new meeting place also includes a fitness studio and auditorium. Cafés and restaurants invite visitors to enjoy food and drink. An imposing inner courtyard offers ample space for cultural events, such as concerts or exhibitions. A five-level underground garage provides plenty of car parking for visitors both from the city and further afield.
By restoring this historic wine factory, architect Philippe Starck has created a fascinating building. Old and ancient are combined with modern futuristic elements. “I wanted to do something impressive, full of energy and enthusiasm. In a nutshell, a building with intelligent elegance and the beauty of happiness,” says Starck of his concept.