Paimio Sanatorium, a former tuberculosis sanatorium designed by Finnish architect Alvar Aalto, is looking for a buyer. Completed in 1933 in Paimio, southwest Finland, the modernist building operated as a treatment center for tuberculosis until the 1960s, when it was converted into a general hospital. Since 2014, it has operated as a rehabilitation center for children and is currently owned by Turku University Hospital.
Aalto designed the project in 1929, taking particular care to design each aspect of the architecture and the interiors as a “medical instrument.” Rooms were designed to accommodate two patients, and each one included two no-splash sinks and personal cupboards. Large windows and balconies were optimized for sunning and taking in views of the surrounding pine forest, while even the interior paint scheme was deliberate—gray, yellow, and soft greens and blues were used throughout. Aalto and his wife Aino also designed all the furniture—including the undulating plywood Paimio Chair.
Photos show that the sanatorium appears to be in spectacular condition; indeed, the historic building has been nominated to be become a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The owners are hoping to find a buyer by the fall. Given the sanatorium’s history and its subsequent functions, let’s hope that prospective buyers wish to preserve the iconic space.