You get a visceral feeling just looking at the images of the new Fogo Island Inn that Todd Saunders has designed in Newfoundland. When we last spoke with him in February for our Off-places issue (uncube No.07), this “anti-hotel” – as he then described it – was still under construction.
Designed by Saunders Architecture for the Shorefast Foundation in collaboration with local firm Sheppard Case Architects Inc., the building consists of two crossed wings, one two-storey and one four-storey, and is more of a public building with guest rooms, than a hotel. The public rooms and facilites are there for the locals and include a library, cinema, gallery, gym, meeting rooms and a sauna, but they can also be used by guests staying in one of the 29 bedrooms. The Inn’s completion follows on from a series of elemental artist studio spaces (also commissioned by the Shorefast Foundation) that Saunders designed for an artist residency programme, again very much linked to the local community, as well as embedded in the landscape, providing employment and drawing on local resources.
So now the Inn is open for business and this series of images show it in the shifting light and weather of Newfoundland, giving a profound sense of the exposure of the site and making the interiors - kitted out with old school, yet contemporary rocking chairs, wood stoves and quilts – look even more welcoming and bright. One could happily imagine holing up for the winter in a place like this: just you and the elements – with only a serious piece of triple-glazing in-between.
– Rob Wilson, uncube