Discover Benelux, Issue 67, July 2019

Page 60

Photo: Coque

‘A temple devoted to sports and culture’ TEXT: CHÉRINE KOUBAT  |  PHOTOS: CHRISTOF WEBER

A sprawling complex combining stateof-the-art leisure and business facilities, the National Sports and Culture Centre d’Coque is a polyvalent space with multigenerational appeal. The futuristic building, set in the financial district and within touching distance of Luxembourg City centre, hosts prominent sporting and cultural events, as well as private corporate functions. The modern and elegant building was designed by famed French architect Roger Taillibert, the man behind the Parc des Princes in Paris and the Olympic Stadium in Montreal. Seamlessly blending with its urban surrounds, it boasts an organic design with a futuristic edge, and 60  |  Issue 67  |  July 2019

owes it name ‘Coque’ – meaning hull – to the shell-shaped spans of prestressed concrete that make up its roofline. The Olympic-sized pool, the centre’s initial undertaking, was inaugurated in 1982, and later developments turned it into the extensive, 60,000-square-metre venue it is today.

Faster, higher, stronger Along with the additional infrastructures encompassed in the aquatic centre (including sauna, Turkish bath, hammam, solarium, outdoor relaxation area and massage suites), the pool welcomes 400,000 visitors each year, and for good reason. Raphaël Stacchiotti, three-time Olympian and national swimming champi-

on, states: “I’ve travelled around the world and I can honestly say that d’Coque is the best. Very few athletes know the luxury of practicing every sport in one place. There is everything you need here, from training to recovery.”

Mixing business with leisure The centre’s amenities attract businesses of all sizes and sectors, from multinationals to local firms, and can accommodate groups of 20 as easily as a 5,000-strong party. The centre boasts compact and well-equipped training and meeting rooms, a larger amphitheatre with 215 seats, an impressive arena, which can hold up to 5,000 people, as well as numerous additional spaces. Highly mod-