Certain places in the world have the happy fortune of being located where the earth offers up heated water, for free. Geology devises the conditions for rain water to permeate porous rock to a sufficient depth where it is heated by the high temperatures under the Earth's crust. It is then redirected to the surface where, in some places, it emits thousands of litres of free hot water every day.   It was for such a location that I chose to design this spa and pool complex.


This design proposes an entirely inward-looking environment for escaping the normal world and immersing oneself in the weightless wonder of water.


The space is divided into areas of different scale and size. The entry is via a sequence of progressively larger spaces until one is inside the main pool, in the principal hall, with attendant water spouts and jacuzzi.


From here you can wade through a kind of water-maze. The water is pushed through the space in a manner evocative of standing in a strongly flowing river. The maze continues through spaces where water cascades on the user or is splashed upwards to fall back on the user. The termination of this route is in a high, enclosed and skylit chamber, evoking the feeling of having travelled far from the regular world, as on arrival at a large chamber of a cave system.


One can use the spa at various levels. The route rises gradually past a series of platforms for relaxation, some containing saunas and steam rooms offering different characteristics. Overlooking the main pool is the main relaxation deck. From here the user can look down on the swimmers in the main pool or in other smaller spaces below. The user can also proceed further up to an roof space, open to the sky, for sunbathing.

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