clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

Glorious golden egg sauna is finally hatching in the U.S.

Solar egg is on a roll—and it’s just arrived in Minneapolis

golden egg sauna
Abisko, Sweden.
Photo: Jean-Baptiste Béranger

Imagine sitting in a sauna...that’s inside a giant golden egg? It all sounds like something straight out of a children’s book, but this Solar Egg sauna, created in Kiruna, Sweden—the northernmost town in the country—is real, and has been providing residents with a nesting place to warm up in the cold climate.

Designed by Swedish artist duo Bigert & Bergström for real estate company Riksbyggen, “Solar Egg” is more than just about being a sauna. It also doubles as a meeting place for residents to discuss the changes that are affecting their town. Per a press release, “The egg shape seeks to symbolize rebirth and new opportunities at the start of Kiruna’s urban transformation, a project that involves the relocation of entire city districts in response to ground subsidence caused by decades of iron ore mining.”

The sauna’s facade is covered in faceted gold mirrors, which reflect and fragment its surroundings and represent the many complexities surrounding issues of climate change. On the inside, walls are clad in honeycomb wood panels, and a large wood-heated and heart-shaped sauna stove takes center stage, heating the sauna up to temperatures between 75° and 85° C (167° F to 185° F).

The project, which has won a Red Dot Award for “Design Concept” has traveled around Europe, including Paris in 2017 as part of the Swedish Design Moves Paris initiative. But this week, the golden egg sauna is touching down in stateside for the first time, hatching at the courtyard of the American Swedish Institute in downtown Minneapolis through April 28. Better yet: Visitors can book an book “full sauna bath experience” via the museum on select days.

Assembling the 69 golden plates of the Solar Egg at the American Swedish Institute this week, a process that takes 1,512 bolts and four to five days.
Photo: Riksbyggen
Copenhagen, Denmark.
Photo: Jean-Baptiste Béranger
Paris, France.
Photo: Jean-Baptiste Béranger
Interior.
Photo: Jean-Baptiste Béranger
Interior.
Photo: Jean-Baptiste Béranger
golden egg sauna
Kiruna, Sweden.
Photo: Jean-Baptiste Béranger