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United Nations North Delegates Lounge



Project details

A team of Dutch designers led by Hella Jongerius, OMA Architects, Irma Boom, artist Gabriel Lester and critic Louise Schouwenberg, won a contest held by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs for the renovation of the Delegates Lounge, right next to the plenary hall of the General Assembly of the UN in the characteristic building of Le Corbusier, Niemeyer and Harrison in New York.

The original UN building was constructed between 1950 and 1952. After 60 years it was time for a thorough renovation to make it safe for the next 50 years. The building was then partly through donations established. The UN continued this tradition and asked Member States to donate money for the renovation. The Netherlands adopted the Delegates Lounge.

The most important change was the removal of the mezzanine that was added in the 70s, so the original monumentality of the lounge and spaciousness were restored. This is the original character of the open space restored and enlarged views of the East River. Also added is a new information desk, and e-paper screens which read information about meetings and feeds from various media will be.

The interior is characterized by openness and transparency. Handmade beaded curtains, new carpets and a mix of old and new furniture, including the original chairs from the ’50s, detailing the renovation. The new furnishings are partly reinterpretations of old designs.

The AVL Workbench tables are as coffee tables and room salon tables used. The completed in the year 2013 redesign of the Delegates Lounge are an excellent opportunity to present Dutch design, architecture and visual arts on an international stage.

This is also an opportunity to create new economic drivers of the Dutch creative industries, a sector that accounts for 280,000 jobs. At the same time underlines Netherlands with this project the value the Government attaches to the United Nations and multilateral cooperation.


Designer: Jongeriuslab

Photographer: Frank Oudeman