Förena Cité Thermale

Laureate for the 2023 Cecobois Awards | Exterior claddings

Laureate for the 2020 Ordre des Architectes du Québec Awards

Silver Award Winner for the 2021 Grand Prix du Design

She is timeless; She is inspired by history while affirming its longevity.

She welcomes and guides the visitor in universes combining contrasts and discoveries.

She is inspired by the landscape; She imbues us with local resources.

She inspires relaxation and contemplation; She leaves plenty of room for the imagination …

Surrounded by rare agricultural land still operating near the metropolitan area, the opportunity to conceive a commercial project respectful of the history and contextual resources was seized by the designers.

Inspired by the hamlet analogy, the pavilion layout adapts to the natural site topography. From the road, the volume forms a clean line in the landscape, concealing the amplitude of the Cité below.

The durability of the ensemble and the concern for long-term coherence have contributed to the development of an immutable architecture that can adapt to different development scenarios. Monochromatic and prismatic, the natural cedar wood volumes are punctuated by black boxes; vestibules welcoming the visitor and guiding him in his various discoveries and experiences. Each pavilion can thus offer different atmospheres within a cohesive and understandable architectural framework.

A vernacular nod to the farm buildings of the surrounding farmland, the silver cedar siding recalls the site’s history while contributing to the use of local and sustainable resources. With development objectives that will make FÖRENA the most important spa in Canada, all facilities meet universal accessibility criteria.

The pavilions, with their geometrically clear openings, become mediums for connecting to the environment and help create a comfortable place where natural light, inherent ventilation and superb views are essential to the feeling of the landscape synergy.

The use of local resources is also integrated into the site’s design. The site and the ponds granite stones were all selected directly from the nearby quarry. The site water management strategies and the vast parking lot favor bio-retention and drainage ditches. The old agricultural ditches were mostly preserved and integrated into the new green infrastructures, so as not to modify the natural water network, not to deplete the water table and ultimately not to affect the crops and the ecosystem of the neighboring plots.

With its exemplary coherence between commercial vocation and environmental integration, FÖRENA can now serve as a benchmark for peri-urban developments which sorely lack a lasting and sustainable vision.