Grotto Sauna, PARTISANS, Toronto, San Souci Island, sauna, Leica 3D scanner, insulation, energy efficient sauna, Lake Huron, cedar, doubled glazed glass, triple glazed glass, energy efficient architecture

To minimize disturbance of the age-old rock, PARTISANS used a Leica 3D scanner to create a site model before working on the freestanding sauna design. After running through several design schemes, the team settled on a concept with a sensual and curvaceous wooden interior clad in cedar timber, that’s contrasted by a modest and simple exterior. The sculpted interior was created with locally sourced cedar timber with parallel grains, a material selected for its warm and aromatic features, quality, and resistance to rot.

Related: Jonas Wagell’s Tiny Green-Roofed Arjan Sauna Vanishes in the Norwegian Outback

The Grotto Sauna was also designed to be energy efficient. The airtight structure is wrapped in insulation and a layer of energy efficient aluminum foil, which creates a “convective air plenum” between the internal wood walls and the space on which the structure is mounted. The round openings were locally fabricated with double and triple glazed high efficiency annealed glass. Vents and fans were installed to increase the structure’s breathability and to prevent rot.

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