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Shining jewel in the port of Hamburg: Zumtobel develops artistic lighting solution for the Elbphilharmonie 2800 special luminaires - including 1200 hand-blown glass ball luminaires

Zumtobel, a brand of the Zumtobel Group, has realised a series of lighting solutions within the building that has already become Hamburg’s new landmark. For this project, the manufacturer of high-quality luminaires developed numerous special luminaires, partly consisting of hand-made elements.

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The customised lighting solution for general illumination in the concert hall is particularly impressive. Zumtobel has referenced the architectural philosophy of combining old and new by working closely with Herzog & de Meuron, lighting design firm Ulrike Brandi Licht and the glass designer Detlef Tanz from Wegberg to carefully craft 1200 hand-blown glass ball luminaires. Paying homage to the nearby River Elbe, the fittings appear like light-filled water bubbles emerging from the undulating acoustic ceiling, in which the luminaire housings are discretely concealed from view. The combination of traditional craftsmanship and modern LED technology made the development of this lighting solution a special challenge for Zumtobel.


The Plaza features a further 870 machine-made plastic ball luminaires. These LED luminaires are grouped in diamond shapes and provide pleasant warm-white general illumination. Zumtobel developed another customised luminaire specifically for the foyer and the cloakroom in front of the concert hall. This hybrid product incorporates a hand-crafted fluorescent fitting with an LED module, which can be separately controlled. While the conventional fluorescent lamp is used for general lighting, the LED module can be regulated to deliver the right colour for the right mood. Depending on the particular event, this means that the 750 luminaires can be individually adjusted to create poignant effect lighting.

Zumtobel has also used a number of established standard luminaires in the Elbe Philharmonic Hall. The general illumination of the Störtebecker restaurant is provided by DIAMO and VIVO spotlights. At the Westin Hotel, PANOS infinity guarantees homogenous basic lighting in the hallways and conference rooms.

The Zumtobel lighting solution reflects various elements of the Elbphilharmonie project, which has taken almost ten years to be completed. “We are delighted to be part of this architectural jewel with our unique lighting solution - and now we can marvel at the end result,” said Nicole Drong, head of the Zumtobel sales office in Hamburg.

Carsten Froh, sales representative for the project, was equally proud: “It is a wonderful feeling to experience the internal and external radiance of this new landmark. Now the stage is set for this magical location to bring music and life to Hamburg’s Hafen City”.

With the opening of the Elbphilharmonie on 11 January 2017, a unique new social and cultural centre in the heart of the harbour becomes accessible to visitors. The building, designed by Swiss architects Herzog & de Meuron, stands directly next to the River Elbe on more than 1000 reinforced concrete posts. The architectural concept blends old and new, with a spectacular marquee-like glass structure mounted on top of a former warehouse with a brick-facade. The building houses a philharmonic orchestra, a hotel, dining facilities, apartments and a viewing platform.

Source: zumtobelgroup

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