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One of Dusseldorf’s most prominent office

highrises gets a new lease of life as a hotel

Commerzbank Highrise

Client: KONDUS ERSTE Immobilienbesitz GmbH & Co. KG represented by Hines Immobilien GmbH / Location: Düsseldorf / GFA: 7,700 m² / Completion: 2021 / Awards: Hotelimmobile des Jahres 2021

Service: Revitalization

A modern classic

The tower block created in the early 1960s by Dusseldorf architect Paul Schneider-Esleben formed part of the German headquarters of the Commerzbank in Dusseldorf at the time. It was connected to the main building on the opposite side of the street by a glass bridge that remains to this day. In 1998 the building was given protected status due to, among other things, its innovative curtain wall façade. It is considered the first elemental high-rise façade in Germany.

Retaining identity, meeting modern standards

The prefabricated, anodised aluminium panels stand out for the rounded-edge windows and are affixed to the building without an additional framework construction. In the course of the change of use, the façade was renovated in close cooperation with the building protection authorities. In this process the original aluminium panels were removed, refurbished and inserted into new façade elements. This enabled the historic appearance of the façade to be maintained whilst meeting the most modern standards of energy efficiency and user comfort.


As well as the architectural planning, HPP also assumed the construction management in this project and, due partly to the limited space available in this urban setting for the storage and transportation of building materials (in front of and inside the building), a sophisticated logistics concept was developed and implemented with the project partners. In addition, in the course of the project implementation details necessitated by the challenges of the existing building were planned alongside the construction work directly on site and were able to be integrated into the overall architectural concept in close cooperation between the building management and (integral) planning from within HPP.   

The strong communication commitment of the construction management enabled building challenges to be identified by the team before they became problems. The use of modern documentation software enabled constant and optimal supervision of progress during the construction of over 200 rooms, as well as single-minded coordination of all the trades involved.  

Elements of the façade were refurbished and reinstalled
Square metres of GFA in the middle of the city were given a new lease of life
Hotel rooms have been created in the course of revitalisation

Urban Context

The 13-storey tower block was designed with an imposing load-bearing structure cantilevered over a drive-in forecourt. The tower floated over this car-friendly plaza and featured the first drive-in counter of a bank building. Today it is flanked by two new buildings and conforms to the standards of an urban environment. The former drive-in areas underneath the tower have been incorporated into the use concept of the hotel by a light glass façade in such a way that the forecourt area is visually extended into the hotel lobby.

„The former drive-in areas have been incorporated into the use concept of the hotel through the light glass façade“

Senior Partner Volker Weuthen

The impact of the building is due not only to the delicate façade but also largely to the striking exposed concrete support structure over the ground floor, upon which the upper storeys seem to float. The impressive construction can be seen from the street through the new, fully glazed outer envelope of the hotel lobby. 

The public space extends
visually into the hotel lobby

Further projects

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