Saunas are wonderful. We love them. We also love the opportunities they present for playing with innovative and experimental design.
There are many incredible and aspirational sauna designs around the world (many in Scandinavia, of course), by renowned architectural firms, by artists, and by laymen. Of course, we’ve all seen the sauna designed by Partisans for a private Canadian island.
Beyond that, here are five of the most beautiful and/or intriguing sauna ideas and designs we’ve seen.
Solar Egg, Kiruna, Sweden
Stockholm-based artist duo Bigert & Bergstrom created an amazing sculptural chamber in the form of an egg-shaped sauna and installed it at Luossabacken in Kiruna, Sweden’s northernmost town. The sculpture was created in response to economic developments affecting the area and townspeople.
“In the arctic climate of Lapland the sauna occupies a key position, as a room for warmth and reflection.”
The temperature inside the egg varies between 75° and 85° Celsius.
Sauna Gondola, Ylaas, Kolari, Finland
The amazing Sauna Gondola starts from the top of Yllas and takes four people at a time on a 20-minute tour in a gondola lift.
At the top of the lift there is another sauna, as well as a fireplace, Jacuzzi and showers.
Remember those windy, freezing cold days of you chattering your teeth whilst the chair makes its slow climb to the summit? Well those days are officially over with the Sauna Gondola in Yllas.. Yes it is exactly that – a sauna in a Gondola. Where else but Finland! Visit velvetescape.com for details. #velvetescape #Yllas #SkiYllas #SkiFinland #SaunaGondola #ski #powder #snow #Snowboard #toasty #Alpine #alpinelife #thealpineway
Ice sauna, Kuusamo, Findland
This incredible sauna is at Rukan Salonki, and is made of ice cubes from the nearby Lake Salonkijärvi. The temperature reaches 60° Celsius. The steam is apparently “softer and wetter than in a regular sauna” where temperatures typically reach 80° Celsius.
The ice sauna seats up to 10 people, drinks are served, and there’s a hole in the ice for winter swimming next to it should you wish to take the extreme temperatures thing further.
One for the bucket list: the ice sauna in northern Finland. Read about this exotic steamy experience in Finnair’s blog. Find the direct link to the blog from feelfinnair’s bio. Photo by Rukan Salonki #feelfinnair #finnair #bluewings #inflightmagazine #kuusamo #ruka #rukansalonki #sauna #icesauna #instatravel #travel
wa_sauna, Seattle, Washington
The floating sauna – a.k.a. wa_sauna – was funded by community and by a crowdfunding campaign, and created by GoCstudio, with a focus on “primal concepts of fire, water, and community.”
wa_sauna can be seen regularly on Lake Union and Lake Washington, and is a registered vessel, powered by a battery-powed motor and heated by a wood burning stove.
According to the studio website, “Boaters and kayakers can venture out and tie off to the surrounding deck, allowing for the sauna tradition to take place on Seattle’s lakes.” (Also featured in the above image)
The recent winner of a @aianational Award – WA Sauna by @go_c_studio is a Floating Sauna on Seattle’s Lake Union, and provides a year-round community space for up to 6 people to warm up before plunging into the cold lake! Encouraging engagement of the local waterways, and following a trend among architects to look for ways to build on water, the project was created through crowd funding site @kickstarter | Photo by @k7scott
Sauna building, Gotherburg, Sweden
Berlin-based architects Raumlabor created this sauna which sits in the harbour at Gothenburg’s Frihhamnen port.
It features a rough exterior of corrugated steel, an interior lined with timber, and a shower room surrounded by walls made up of glass bottles. The building is part of a wider regeneration of Frihamnen, which is being transformed into a public park ahead of the city’s 400th anniversary in 2021.
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(Feature image: GoCstudio)