They say if it ain't Baroque, don't fix it, but this historic Baroque apartment building in the center of Ljubljana, Slovenia needed a major overhaul to transform it into a modern apartment building. The former historic block featured a courtyard in the center that was enclosed and used for mechanical equipment. To renovate it, OFIS Arhitekti hollowed out its core and rebuilt it with a modern glass atrium that lets an abundant amount of light flow into the space. The renovation also included a rehabilitation of the historic stone arches, columns and facade.
OFIS Arhitekti was hired to design the renovation of the historic Baroque Court Apartments from an office building with an enclosed central courtyard. Located in the old city center next to the City Hall, opposite the Robba Fountain and close to Plecnik’s three bridges, the apartment building now features a beautiful open air central courtyard with a modern glazed facade. By hollowing out the central court, OFIS was able to open the building up to light, views and natural ventilation. While the exterior retained all of its historic elements and included a rehabilitation of the classic design elements, the interior is completely modern and features a quiet and reflective garden.
The rehabilitation and renovation was performed under the supervision of State Heritage to ensure the historic Baroque elements remained. These elements are also easily seen from the interior courtyard through the glass facade. Transparency and reflection are now very important elements of the complex, which now contains 12 apartments. Energy use is minimized through the use of natural daylighting and natural ventilation. No air conditioning is needed except for the very roof apartments. The project was just recently completed this year.
Images ©Tomaz Gregoric and Jan Celeda