Ramundberget is a well established, genuine, small ski resort with a strong brand. Since 1936 an increasing number of people have visited Ramundberget to experience the nature, hike or go by ski in the slopes in the tracks or on trips in the mountains nearby.
A restaurant on top the mountain close to the ski slopes, had been on the wish list for several years.
The senior management of Ramundbeget ski resort wanted a new mountain restaurant for strengthen their brand. By being “a unique type of restaurant with a menu based on local and Sami food culture, and with an architecture that should make Restaurant Tusen worth a visit”.
As Ramundberget is a family owned business the budget for the project was limited.
Our first sketches showed a protecting leaning fence integrated with the building. A structure that could let the winds pass with an opening towards the sun in the middle of the day.
After some alternative locations, that we tested by ski in the area, we chose a site with a nice view. An easy accessible plot for skiers in all weather types and where the low standing sunbeams could reach this spot in February/March.
When we put out t the restaurant it was midsummer, and the snow was melted, we had found a dry flat place, near a creek, at the tree line. Well visible on distance for the skier’s.
In this unique and sensitive context we wanted a building in harmony with the nature, the year around and day and night. Birch is the only tree that grows up to this altitude where the mountain moor starts.
The plot is sometimes very windy. We chosed the round shape on the building to let the winds pass, and to drop the snow beside the entrance. By letting full length trunks enclose the protected entrance area we achieved a sunny calm outdoor area at the entrance. Open to the ski slopes.
We choose birch as it is a local nature given façade material. You not need to paint it and it are nice to look at even when the bark is falling of. The big dimensions strands strong against the hard weather and a trunk is easy exchangeable if necessary.
The logs also protect the underlying construction. The logs also let the snow stay and strengthen the experience of the facade. The Resturant Tusen is like a grouse that is a common bird here. Grey during the summer and white in the winter.
By choosing a wooden construction we achieved low weight and low carbon dioxide impact. It is a prefabricated building carefully put to the the ground and also a way to minimize the building time.
The walls is made of blocks that are prefabricated on a local factory and transported on a temporary track, until the snow arrived in October. Then all building material is transported up by snow groomers adapted for material transportation.
The birch bark/white birch plywood on the inside of the facade mirrors the exterior and invites the surrounding nature to the inside.
We wanted the inner space and the interior to feel both spatial an intimate. Each window in the restaurant is framing a unique view on both levels.The upper windows are for the stars and the northern lights. The interior colours are inspired by moss and lichens on the floor and the cloudberries on some of the walls and on the bar.
The food that is served in the restaurant on local stone plates is local, reindeer and trout.
The restaurant has its own system for wastewater treatment, and it gets its own water from a source in the ground nearby. We have used the same contractor, geothermal, drilling for water and drilling for the foundation of the building. Therefore, we have a building with not so much negative impact on the ground.
The building is warmed up by ground heating and heat exchangers take care of the warmth from the air and water. To top up during really cold days electrical heating is used. In the summer when it is closed for skiers everything is turned off.
And the management is satisfied a lot of people has visited Ramundberget to visit the Restaurant Tusen. Tusen ist the Swedish word for thousand that is the altitude for the restaurant in meter above the sea level.
As we have lot of infrastructure on the site and it would be easy to put up a small wind mill it is easy to make it as an ever better environmental project than it already is today. On of our ideas is to put out small tent like buildings near the restaurant to make it possible to offer an overnight stay on the mountain in the future.
Design team: Murman arkitekter AB by Hans Murman and Ulla Alberts