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Dom Hotel Cologne

Modernization of one of the oldest Grand Hotels in Europe

The old-established Dom Hotel in Cologne is being modernized by ingenhoven associates in close cooperation with the office for the preservation of historic buildings. In early 2014, the Düsseldorf-based practice won first place in an international competition, and one year later started work on the design for the project.

The hotel, which is located close to Cologne Cathedral, will be rated 5-star and will have 120 guest rooms and suites. ingenhoven associates are primarily responsible for the repair and preservation of the historic facade, including its colonnades, and the addition of an elegant glass-fronted recessed story on top of the existing building. This results in a roof with a horizontal structure, which creates a counterpoise to the soaring verticality of the cathedral.

The roof will be given a recessed raised part, thus creating a flat and slightly receding roof line that follows the outline of the building footprint. The result is a light-weight, even floating, impression. The new design takes into account the height restrictions imposed by the Cologne authorities. In addition, the extension reflects the urban design effect as perceived from the level of pedestrians—in particular from Domplatte and from the direction of Roncalliplatz.

There will be planted roofscapes and furthermore—in accordance with ingenhoven associates’ supergreen®-approach to sustainable architecture—a new inner courtyard with plenty of greenery.

In order to remove excess material from the facade, large glass panels are planned for the facade of the colonnade. In this way, the “inner” colonnade facade is given back its original character and becomes an independent, prestigious space in front of the hotel that is reminiscent of the qualities of the original building, while linking it with contemporary functionality. The main entrance of Europe’s oldest Grand Hotel will be moved to the south elevation facing Roncalliplatz.

During the construction, the protected parts, including the facade of the former luxury hotel and a listed stairwell, will be protected, secured and then incorporated in the future building structure.
During the work for the detailed structural survey, more and more design packages were added to the building elements that were the subject of the competition, owing to the poor condition of the existing building structure. Examples are the replacement of the window elements and the shop windows as part of the refurbishment of the historic facade. In 2016, after a detailed examination of the existing loadbearing structure with regard to fire protection and services installations, it was concluded that the continuation of the refurbishment work would not make sense, both from a technical and commercial point of view. The clients accepted the recommendation to take down part of the structure and strip out the Dom Hotel.

When work will have been completed, the hotel in this unique location adjacent to the famous cathedral will once again open its doors.

  • Location
  • Am Hof, Cologne, Germany
  • Built
  • Construction period: 2016–2024

    Competition: Limited, single-stage design competition (2013/2014), 1st prize

    GFA: 21,000 m²

    Programme: 5-star Grand-Hotel (refurbishment) / retail buildings (new construction)