The City of Bratislava and the Metropolitan Institute of Bratislava have the intention to restore the original function of the Grössling Bath and complete it with new forms of cultural-community activities and thus open the space to the public.
The Grössling City Bath is an iconic building of Bratislava. The heyday of the building dating from 1895 was in 1914 when the part for swimmers and other recreational facilities were added to the recreational and balneo baths. In those days, the townsmen used the bath not only for cleansing and sports but also as an important meeting point.
In addition to the renovation of the bath section, they also plan to move part of the City Library into the separate area of the object and thus create a public institution which will be accessible to everyone. Moving the part of the City Library from Laurinská street to the Grössling is an opportunity for its restart – the updating and modernisation of its equipment, activities and services. At the same time, the new library opens up a space for dialogue on how the modern city library should look and how it should function. The City Library in Grössling will develop into an open space for active events, meetings and exploring.
The main idea of the Grössling object is to immerse oneself in the bath atmosphere of Bratislava, in a relaxing environment, as well as in books in a quiet space of the library. The branch of the City Library will offer a residence programme for artists that will welcome writers and translators. The café will become a reading space of the daily press and the latest publications. The concept also includes the renovation of public spaces and the surrounding area of the building. The revitalised park on Medená street shall become the gateway to nature.
Winning Architectural Design
The winning design of the architectural competition allows not only to restore the architectural significance of Grössling but also to rediscover the ancient social and cultural value it has for the city of Bratislava. The design fulfils the vision of connecting the function of the bath, the city library and the house of literature.
The winning design responds best to the demand of creating a quiet, closed city block with a well-designed flexible square with a defined relationship to the surrounding city. The authors were able to follow up on the historical value of the complex and increase the quality of the building with simple interventions. The design makes full use of the existing premises and contains almost no destructive interventions and thus highlights the value and patina of the 125-year-old building and at the same time creates a functional operating scheme for the spa, the library and the cafe.
Due to the current situation with COVID-19, the Grössling Bath can only be visited virtually. Hence, you are welcome to go on a 360° virtual tour and explore Bratislava’s legendary building.