Open House Weekend!
It was Open House London on 21-22 September, and for the second year in a row we were thrilled to be amongst the 800 buildings taking part in this annual event, where inspiring buildings you can't normally see, open their doors for free!
As the charity for the Royal Parks, we feel so lucky to have the Isis Education Centre at The LookOut as our home. Located in the heart of Hyde Park, it opened in 2011 and it warranted its place in Open House London on its tree-canopy design and eco-friendly credentials.
Designed by David Morley Architects, the building blends into the park landscape with a brown roof covered in vegetation for wildlife and structural supports made out of green oak trunks. In the design and build, every detail has been considered, even the bits you can't see - with the Victorian reservoir underneath the building providing grey water for the toilets and irrigation.
Over the weekend, hundreds of people wandered through the gates. Some had come specially as they'd read about the building on the Open House London website or brochure, some just spotted the sign and wanted to see what all the fuss was about.
As well as celebrating the architecture, visitors of all ages joined in with the pond dipping and children enjoyed colouring in paper caterpillars! After all, the main function of the Isis Education Centre is for its visitors to discover the natural world.
It had an international feel, Americans posed with the totem poles, young students from Berlin joined the tour and Italians soaked up the atmosphere by the pond. Best of all, there were lots of smiles.
We want to say a massive thanks to our volunteers who helped out over the weekend: Malcolm, Clare, Demetrios and Crystal of Open House London and our volunteers, Stoyanka and Liz. We couldn't have done it without you.
And thanks to all the people who came. We hope you loved the building as much as we do. If you missed out, sign up for next year on the Open House London website or come to a Discovery Day or another Experience and see the centre for yourself!
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