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Visitor centre Groot Speijck, Oisterwijk, Netherlands

Nature visitor centre and restaurant Natuurmonumenten Groot Speijck in Oisterwijk

The restaurant Groot-Speyk used to be a renown restaurant to relax and drink coffee amidst the marshlands of Oisterwijk which was until its closure in possession of the family Michels. The original building, Groot Speijck, the heart of the present ensemble, was built in 1932 and commissioned by Natuurmonumenten together with the grandfather of Mr Michels.

In 2008, FBW won the opportunity to transform this building into a benevolent and modern all-inclusive visitor centre that commemorates the spirit of the past.  

With the new centre in Oisterwijk the once partitioned functions are now integrated in one, including the restaurant, the visitor centre itself and office space. Characteristic elements of the previous building have been preserved and enhanced, such as the roof, creating a beautiful open space.

The facades of the centre are executed in oak wood with maximum transparency, protected against the sun impact by a modest roof overhang. The eave of the roof is in glass and decorated with a fragment of text written by Jacque P Thijsse, one of the founders of the organisation. In front of the glass, rust free steel cables extend from the eaves into the ground and serve as support for climbing plants. All elements combined make for a multi-layered facade, which results in a gradual transition from the interior of the building to the forest beyond.

Project Details

Name Visitor centre Groot Speijck
Location Oisterwijk, Netherlands
Date of Design 2008-2014
Area 1,600sqm
Project Costs 1,800,000usd
Client Vereniging Natuurmonumenten (National Natural Heritage Association)