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PROJECT: DELISABATINI architetti 
YEAR: 2009-2010
NAME: Grotta di Sale
LOCATION: ROMA
CLIENT: Salbea
COLLABORATOR: D. Rocchio


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The theme, news in Italy, is a SPA with artificial cave of salt that reproduce naturally, with the only materials used, the atmosphere full of trace of salt mines that, in northern European countries, are used for therapeutic purposes.
There are two design operations: 
To divide: The existing place of 150 square meters is divided into two parts, creating two different and opposite worlds: the first one, the farthest from the entrance, is the informal world of a Cave, a place to reach and to be discovered. The second one is visible and accessible by road, the formal and geometric world of the atrium and of other service rooms. 
To merge: the sensory and physical location, from broken trend, join the two sides and leads the visitors to the cave, accompanied by the sound of the flowing water. 
In summary two opposites microcosms, as two cavities.
The one, governed by a geometric law, where the use of only one material for the envelope makes it comparable to the excavation in a quarry, totally imbued of white abstraction, pervaded by a quiet diffused light, animated by sound presence of water. The atrium, created by a primary solid, shrinks and expands itself according to functional needs that it contains. 
The other one, however, is the informal space of the cave that frees itself entirely from its rigid and regular construction that contains it. It 'a pseudo-natural cavity that disorients and alienates, in which the weight and the roughness of the stone material thickens. 
Therefore, the visitor suddenly overwhelmed by the unexpected magical and surreal landscape, opposite by the icy reality that has left behind, awakens forget sensory experience, walking into a cave on a beach in salt. 
The materials are, for the cave, of large stones of Polish and Himalayan salt and salt of the Dead Sea; for all other environments, the resin is the only material used to maintain the continuous and monolithic appearance.