Dutch firm Govaert and Vanhoutte Architects have transformed a beautiful windmill and adjacent farm building into the innovative D-hotel in Kortijk. An iconic symbol of the Netherlands, the windmill rises on a farm site around a series of buildings formerly used on the farm, which are met by modern glass block structures. The adaptive reuse project is decorated with themes focused around art, film and music, and it won the architects third place in Hotel Et Lodge magazine’s international competition.
Both the windmill and inner farmhouse square were built in 1841, and preserved and protected as landmarks. Govaert & Vanhoutte wanted to pay respect to the historic structures while introducing a modern edge, so the unobtrusive glass and concrete structures were built to house the hotel’s guest rooms. The network of original farm buildings and the windmill are connected underground by a historic tunnel that surfaces at the hotel reception and lobby. The grounds have been restored to their agrarian splendor, giving guests a picturesque landscape to wander around in the shadow of the windmill.
Inside, the hotel is the height of innovative design and creative modernism. A series of themed suites have been dreamed up by world renowned designers, such as the Movie Suite by director Jan Verheyen, which features a wall sized mural commemorating the silver screen, or the Floral Design Suite by Geert Pattyn, with green prints, flower arrangements and furniture recycled from tree trunks.
The new concrete buildings are flooded with natural light through floor to ceiling windows, which also give guests a view of the beautiful grounds. The hotel’s gym, called d-boxx, has over 5000 square feet of solar panels that power it with clean energy.
The D-hotel fuses old and new with luxury for a relaxing and unique vacation.