Super-cool Public Spaces From Around the World: Aquatic Centres

November 6th, 2014

Our love for public spaces shouldn’t come as a surprise to you, we’ve talked about them quite a bit on the blog and on our Twitter. We’re constantly sharing with you new and innovative public spaces, as well as how important it is for the community to have good public spaces open to anyone and every one.

Something that always seems to become community hubs are aquatic centres. With free swim times and lessons for the kids, it’s just natural that people flock to these spaces. Here are a few aquatic centres that have caught our eye over the last little while, let us know if we missed any really cool ones in the comments below.

Les Bains des Docks, Le Havre, France


Le Bains des Docks, translated to The Bath by the Docks, is an Aquatic Centre in Le Havre, France. It was designed to revitalize the docks and the warehouse district, and was inspired by the Roman thermal baths. The exterior of the building might seem a little blah (very much like a warehouse) but inside, it’s a swimmers’ paradise! There are over 12 indoor and outdoor pools, including one Olympic sized pool and one children’s pool, as well as a sauna, hammam, spa and fitness room.

For more pictures and information, check out this article on Dezeen.

Water Cube Water Park, Beijing, China


Built for the 2008 Summer Olympics, the aquatic centre was then transformed into a giant water park! There’s awesome slides, a lazy river, a wave pool, floating jellyfish and so much more. It’s really the most incredible water park you’ll ever come across, and it’s now Beijing’s second most visited tourist spot  – coming second only to the Great Wall. It’s also the largest water park in all of Asia.

Fun fact: the renovations that turned the aquatic centre into a first-class water park were led by Forrec, a Toronto-based design firm!

For more pictures and information, check out this article on Inhabitat.

London Olympic Aquatics Centre, London, UK


This renovation project took two years, but the London Olympic Aquatics Centre (originally designed by one of our favourite architects, Ms. Zaha Hadid) finally opened to the public on March 1st, 2014. Though the centre still features 10 million litres of water, it looks far different than it did when Olympians swam there in the Summer Games back in 2012. The facility features a 50 meter, 10-lane competition pool as well as a 50 meter, 8-lane training pool for the Missy Franklin wannabes.

For more information and pictures, check out their website.