ARCHITECTURE: Kino Rex
with Meierpartner, Holzer Kobler Architekten & C. Caviezel
Client Kinobetriebe Marti
Location Thun, Switzerland
Kino Rex is an institution at the heart of all the citizens of Thun. As part of the Rex Max Thun mixed-use development, the old movie theater on Aarestrasse has been relocated to the new building complex, offering the opportunity to create a new cutting-edge multiplex cinema. Together with Holzer Kobler, NAU was commissioned to design the new venue that hosts five auditoriums with an overall capacity of 1000 seats, as well as a foyer, a restaurant and an event lounge on the first floor. Several innovative concepts were implemented, including a special movie theater with cabaret seating, where a 3-course meal is served during the screening. Programmatic synergies and technical innovations create a contemporary facility that can host all sorts of events beyond the cinema, from academic conferences to private parties.
The visitor is welcomed into an inspiring atmosphere in black, red and white. The public areas are organized around a complex helical form, which incorporates a grand stair providing access to the lounge on the first floor. This red volume defines the foyer, ticket office, restaurant, and bar as well as the access to service spaces. Inspired by the original Kino Rex, dynamic forms and neon lighting create a contemporary cinema space, in continuity with the interiors of the 1950s. Renowned textile designer Claudia Caviezel developed an original design for the walls and floor based on silhouettes, film sets and color gradients recalling the Film Noir period. These motifs add an emotional note to the spaces and complement their scenographic approach, transporting the visitor into a world of dreams and illusions.