The Stavros Niarchos Foundation cultural center is located at Kallithea, 4 km to the south of the center of Athens. This is an important cultural complex inside a large urban park of 170,000 m2, including a Library and the Greek National Opera House.
The project revitalizes a large semi-abandoned area. The studio RPBW has designed an artificial hill with a park whose sloping surface concludes in the large architectural presence of the cultural center, which opens to a spectacular view of the sea. A public space – the agora – permits entrance to both the library and the concert hall, connecting the two buildings.
The opera house has two theaters: one seats 450 persons, and will be used for ballet and traditional opera productions; the other, with 1400 seats, is for more experimental performances.
The library is a public resource. The reading room with its glass walls is at the top of the building, a transparent box with a square plan offering fine views of Athens and the sea.
It is located under the Energy Canopy, a roof with photovoltaic panels to generate all the energy required by the cultural center during normal opening hours. Natural ventilation has also been applied where possible inside the buildings.
The innovative solution for environmental sustainability have led to Platinum certification, the highest LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) rating.
The Quadrato table, in a special size and outfitted with vertical divider panels, is joined by the Cirene chairs. The contribution of the historic design company continues in the wing for the opera house: the foyer features custom-sized Pollack sofas, while the dressing rooms are furnished with the Tuareg model. The lounge contains the Keel tables (Form Us With Love) and the Assuan sofas. The communal areas, starting with the spacious hall, are furnished with the Basket chairs and the essential Dan and Arthur tables.