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Norway to open Europe's first underwater restaurant
Posted on 02/11/2017 , Modified on 06/11/2017

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Europe's first underwater restaurant will open in Norway by 2019. Located at a depth of 5 meters beneath the North Sea, near the town of Baly, the restaurant will have room for around 100 customers.

Fancy a meal 5 meters under the surface of the North Sea?

Fancy a meal 5 meters under the surface of the North Sea?
© solerf/123RF

The Norwegian town of Baly is set to become a lot more famous in the coming years, as it is the chosen location for Europe's first underwater restaurant, which is set to open its doors in March 2019. The restaurant, which will be situated 5 meters under the surface of the North Sea, will be called 'Under', a name chosen for its double meaning - in Norwegian the word translates as 'wonder'. The building has been designed by the architectural firm Snøhetta, which is also behind the Bibliotheca Alexandrina in Egypt and the Oslo Opera House.

The underwater restaurant will have three floors and will boast an 11-meter-long acrylic glass window, which promises to offer spectacular views of the seabed. One meter thick concrete walls will allow the building to withstand the water pressure as well as the whims of the sea. But the restaurant will not only offer diners a simple aquatic panorama, with the architects guarantying an immersive experience: "On rough sea days, the air of the restaurant will be fresh and salty, like a light spray."

This article was originally published in French.

At the southernmost point of the Norwegian coastline by the village of Båly, Snøhetta has designed the underwater restaurant «Under». Like a sunken periscope, the restaurant's massive acrylic windows offer a view of the seabed as it changes throughout the seasons and varying weather conditions. The restaurant, which will also function as a research center for marine life, is a tribute to the Norwegian coast and to #Lindesnes ? to the wild fauna of the sea and to the rocky coastline of Norway's southern tip. #architecture #interiorarchitecture #restaurant #marine #Norway ?? @mir.no

Une publication partagée par Snøhetta (@snohetta) le

Did you know that Under is designed to consider its geographic context and aquatic neighbors? The sleek, streamlined form of the building is encapsulated in a concrete shell with a coarse surface that invites mussels to cling on. Over time, as the mollusk community densifies, the submerged monolith will become an artificial mussel #reef that functions dually to rinse the sea and naturally attract more marine life to its purified waters. Read more on snohetta.com/projects. #architecture #underwaterrestaurant #under #design #norway #interiorachitecture #nature #lindesnes #restaurant ??@mir.no

Une publication partagée par Snøhetta (@snohetta) le

"Under" has been designed to blend into surrounding marine ecosystem. Its concrete shell has a rough surface designed to attract mussels. According to the Snøhetta: "As the population of mollusks increases, this submerged monolith will become an artificial reef that has the dual function of filtering the sea and hosting a rich marine life, attracted by purified water." The structure will also serve as a marine research center. While ?Under' will be a novelty on the European dining scene, similar underwater restaurants already exist in several locations around the world, most notably in Dubai and the Maldives.