Graber & Steiger Architekten: Mühle – residential and commercial building / Sempach - best architects 18

Graber & Steiger Architekten

Mühle – residential and commercial building / Sempach

best architects 18

multi-family homes


Luzern / Switzerland


Graber & Steiger


With the aim of preserving the special atmosphere of the town of Sempach while updating it in keeping with the times, the residential and commercial building responds in differentiated fashion to the varying urban spaces around it. Established structures and paths are echoed and reinforced by subtle bends in the building volume, which takes up a respectful dialogue with the nearby Witch Tower. The positioning of the building creates hierarchic outdoor spaces that offer various degrees of public accessibility versus privacy, each with its own mood. An open urban space, narrow alleyways and an introverted courtyard complement the existing urban spatial structure. Inside the slender building wings arranged around the courtyard are single-storey apartments whose occupants benefit from light and views on multiple sides. A continuous sequence of spaces generously meanders through each unit, widening out and then narrowing again, lending each flat a unique identity. The suspenseful effect of alternating light exposure and orientation relate these fluid interior spatial sequences in playful manner to the medieval urban structure outside.