Creating something new from nature
Have you ever wondered how bees produce their delicious honey? The raw material for their process: nectar. By extracting nectar from flowers, passing it on and processing it, they convert it to honey. The conversion of an old house into a café followed this idea too: to create something new from the resources of nature.
Modelled after Nature – conversion as a cycle of renewal
Bees not only use natural resources, they are also an important component in the cycle of renewal. On their flight from flower to flower, they carry pollen and thus enable the growth of fruit.
Following this idea of renewal, the owners of a house with a gabled roof decided to convert it into the cosy Queen Bee Café. Barely a single stone was left untouched in the conversion process. Only the exterior walls and the wooden framework of the inner walls were left standing. Even the roof truss was completely renewed.
The expansion into a café followed strict ecological standards: clay earth and wood as natural building materials, renewable energy sources and rainwater utilisation in the building utilities.
Today, the sun shines through large window openings and a wide dormer. The covered outdoor terrace invites you to enjoy the open air.
Pure nature – enjoyment for all the senses
The cosy café in Zimmern ob Rottweil in Baden-Württemberg spoils you with homemade cakes and fresh snacks as well as delicious drinks. When selecting ingredients and products, strict attention is paid to regionality and organic quality.
But it is not only your palate that will be indulged. The clay-plastered interior walls regulate the humidity and ensure a pleasant indoor climate. Clay earth also binds odours and pollutants. This further enhances your sense of well-being.
On cold days, the in-wall heating in the clay-earth walls provides pleasant warmth. The radiant heat generated, similar to heat from the sun’s rays, does not warm the room air, but rather the objects and bodies in it. Earthen clay, a heat accumulator, optimally supports this type of heating system.
The main café counter made of rammed earth is a feast for the eyes. As a special highlight, two of the layers characteristic of rammed earth were coloured black and white. These colourful stripes were – of course – modelled after the stripes of bees.
With so much thought given to quality, comfort and enjoyment, it is no wonder that the Queen Bee Café is often buzzing and humming like a beehive.Read more »
Nature in construction – Clay walls from Claytec
The bright and spacious dining and event rooms of the café prove: a cosy, modern ambience with a high level of comfort can also exist within old walls. When selecting the building materials, the heating system and the energy optimisation of the building, a philosophy of sustainability was put into practice.
Earthen clay, wood and reed were used for the construction of the interior walls. Inside the exterior walls, a wooden facing was built. Where walls had to be rebuilt, this was done in timber stud construction. In the area where in-wall heating was to be installed, reed matting was applied to the wood facing. All walls were given a base coat of Claytec clay undercoat plaster, which was sprayed on.
The wall surfaces received a finish with Claytec clay topcoat fine, which was finely abraded. A honey-yellow clay colour and, in parts, a top coat of YOSIMA clay designer plaster give the rooms a warm atmosphere. For the eye-catching café counter, rammed earth was placed in layers in formwork and compacted.
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Other discoveries in this region:
Japanese Teahouse in Karlsruhe City Park
CLAYopatra Room Rutesheim Seminar Center