Reconstruction of Hotel Plitvice - Dionaea

Reconstruction of Hotel Plitvice

Surrounded by dense forest, sinkholes and meadow grass, near the very entrance to the national park, the location of Hotel Plitvice in this unique landscape was a challenge in designing its environment.

Preliminary landscape design solution for the reconstruction of Hotel Plitvice

Surrounded by dense forest, sinkholes and meadow grass, near the very entrance to the national park, the location of Hotel Plitvice in this unique landscape was a challenge in designing its environment.

Within the landscape design solution, we wanted to use and preserve all of the natural features and with mild interventions, respecting the conservation base, enable the revival of the area's potential with new contents. Our starting premise was to preserve and emphasise the unique views from the hotel area and its surroundings.

The hotel landscape is thematically zoned into five interconnected units, with regard to the functions within the hotel: entrance square, belvedere and the Art, Relax and Adrenaline sinkholes.

Entrance square

The entrance square as a space of synergy between road and pedestrian traffic, with its natural materials and informal lines, suggests to the guests the natural character of the area they have come to. With a change in the paving, the functions of pedestrian and road traffic were separated.

The central part, which leans on the new entrance with a canopy, is separated from road traffic with green islands with indigenous groundcovers, shrubs and newly designed trees. In addition to plant material, the three-dimensional elements of the central square include simple wooden cubes that serve as sitting elements, lower blocks as exhibition artifacts made of local materials (limestone, tufa, etc.) and a map of the hotel environment in natural materials.

The removal of the hotel annex frees up the area designed as the "green back" of the hotel, in which groundcovers, smaller and taller ornamental and forest plants alternate, and which includes several smaller oases with sitting elements.


The belvedere is located on a slope by the road, with views of a large waterfall, Lake Kozjak and the forest. The idea of a belvedere goes beyond the framework of a single point from which one observes the environment, it is conceived as a playful linear element which extends along the slope, adapting to the existing topography.

In addition to wooden elements that allow users to stay in the space, simple steps made of stone have been designed to connect the road with the green plateau in front of the hotel. The tiered seats themselves can be multifunctional and serve as a space for occasional events.

Their arrangement respects the existing vegetation and, as a spatial intervention, they do not disrupt the area, but are designed as a simple mounting structure.


The sinkholes, one of the karst phenomena, have been revitalized by adding content without aggressive interventions that could interfere with their structure.

The thematic division of the sinkholes relies on functions within the hotel and next to the hotel itself. The Adrenaline sinkhole is located by the part of the hotel containing the gym and fitness room, the Relax sinkhole is an extension of the hotel lounge area, while the Art sinkhole is located next to the hotel and is an open-air gallery. Stretched above the Adrenaline sinkhole is a suspended bridge with wobbly platforms and climbing nets. The Relax sinkhole has suspended nets for lounging, and platforms for accessing the nets, around the existing trees.

Some areas also have cocoon swings and make a unified lounge area with the terrace. The area of the third sinkhole was conceived as a scenography for temporary art installations (e.g., light as an interpretation of the constellations of the Small and Big Bear).

With the preliminary landscape design, we have tried to emphasise the existing qualities of the area and ensure the ambient values of individual zones.

With minimal intrusion and by using local materials, the result is an area adapted to the people and the spirit of the place. Horticultural interventions were guided by the original solution from the 50's, with the rational preservation of high vegetation, but also the necessary removal of individual trees due to their poor condition, obscuring important views, etc.

The choice of newly designed plant material is in accordance with the climate and the specifics of the location.

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