Jahrhunderthalle, Bochum, Germany

PANDOMO® Wall – wrap-around aesthetics.

Visitors to the Bochum Jahrhunderthalle lounge are greeted by what resembles a long half-pipe. Although glass and steel dominate the facility’s architecture and the gallery level of the foyer annex is open on all sides, the lounge, situated on this level, feels like a place to retreat and recharge. This effect was achieved by eliminating all joints and edges from the design of the rear wall, ceiling and floor so that these are perceived as a single harmonious expanse extending over 100 metres. From here, the guest experiences the bustle of the foyer and staircases below literally and figuratively removed. This sense of being in a tranquil cocoon is enhanced by the use of coloured light beamed onto the silky-matt wall and ceiling from a strip in the floor. The choice of colour moods is left to each event organiser.

A simple backdrop to a grand spectacle.

The space’s distinctive look and feel was achieved by Düsseldorf architect Thomas Pink through the innovative use of high-quality materials. With a view to emphasising the industrial character of the building, the ceilings, walls and floors adhere to a coherent design idiom that creates a sense of visual continuity throughout. The unbroken expanse of wall and ceiling forms a 1,300-square-metre backdrop for the light coming from the floor. To facilitate the installation of drywalling, the area was divided into nine symmetrical sections, which visually echo the steel sections of the adjoining roof. A newly developed decorative cement-based render was selected for the wall and ceiling and, despite the challenges posed by the arc of the half-pipe, proved more than a match for the task – not only in terms of working properties but also in successfully producing the desired look and feel. That product was PANDOMO® Wall. Pushing PANDOMO® Wall to the top of the list were the even, seamless surfaces it creates. They are smooth without being sterile and produce a matt lustre, which optimally diffuses light. The lounge also features a magnesite floor finish to further underscore the industrial aesthetic, and the render, which is initially white, was carefully toned to the same shade of grey.

The surfaces’ ability to withstand the knocks, scuffs and scratches that come with highly frequented public spaces was a key priority. In this regard, too, our product delivered a well-rounded and long-lasting solution. On completion, the surfaces were sealed with PANDOMO® stone oil. The coating process produced a uniform surface, which is dirt and water repellent. The use of this innovative material in a large-scale project prior to the official market launch not only demonstrated its visual appeal but also such practical advantages as how little material you need and how easy it is to apply with readily available tools. Planners, architects and contractors were duly impressed.