Italian design firm LEAPfactory recently completed a magnificent eco-hotel perched atop Russia's Mount Elbrus, the highest peak in Europe. The latest in LEAPfactory’s line of high-altitude prefab pods, the LEAPrus 3912’s modular system features a light, specially engineered exoskeleton that provides superior protection against the elements. This prefab eco-hotel also emphasizes the firm's many sustainable tenets through its energy self-sufficient design.
Located at a dizzying height of 13,123 feet (4,000 meters), LEAPrus 3192’s surrounding alpine environment is notorious for its extreme climatic conditions. The new eco-hotel, which boasts spectacular panoramic views atop Mt. Elbrus, marks the first stage of tourism development in the northern mountainous region of the Russian Caucasus.
Within its four prefab, modular structures, the eco-hotel offers 49 beds, a restaurant, and even an integrated sewage treatment plant. To withstand the harsh alpine climate, the architectural shell was built using high-quality, advanced technology that dramatically reduces energy requirements. LEAPrus 3912’s other sustainable highlights include: solar cells that generate the structure’s electricity and power; an internal air circulation system featuring heat recovery; LED lighting; and a water system supplied by outside snow melt.
The modular structures were first designed and manufactured in Italy and then transported by helicopter to the slopes of Mt. Elbrus. A team of highly trained technicians completed assembly in the span of a few days in July. After final set-up and testing, LEAPrus 3912 was opened to the public in September. The entire eco-hotel is regulated and controlled via satellite offsite to facilitate effective year-round management..