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IN PICS: Mario Botta inaugurates latest creation in Switzerland

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IN PICS: Mario Botta inaugurates latest creation in Switzerland
Photo: Enrico Cano
11:48 CEST+02:00
Mario Botta’s ‘stone flower’ restaurant opened on the summit of Monte Generoso in the canton of Ticino on Wednesday.
The world-famous architect, who was born in the canton, was present at the inauguration of the panoramic restaurant in one of Italian-speaking Switzerland’s most popular hiking spots.
 
The 20 million franc Fiore di pietra – meaning ‘stone flower’ after its abstract floral shape – took two years to build and required a new cable car to be constructed in the valley, reported news agencies.
 
The view from the 1,705m altitude restaurant will look out over the Swiss and Italian Alps including Monte Rosa.
 
Photo: Enrico Cano
 
It can be accessed on foot or via cog railway from Capolago on the shore of Lake Lugano. Built in 1890, the line is one of the oldest cog railways in Switzerland.
 
It was built on the site of an old hotel-restaurant which was demolished after it was damaged by a landslide.
 
Building at altitude is always a “challenge” said Botta, but the stone flower’s 1,705m altitude has nothing on his previous Swiss projects which have included the restaurant at Glacier 3,000, whose altitude is the same as its name. 
 
Photo: Enrico Cano
 
Born in Mendrisio, Botta’s work is seen all over Switzerland, with notable projects including the Museum Jean Tinguely in Basel, the Rigi Kaltbad spa on Lake Lucerne and the Tschuggen Berg Oase wellness centre in Arosa.
 
Internationally he has worked on the restoration and extension of La Scala in Milan, the municipal library in Dortmund, MOMA modern art museum in San Francisco and the Garnet Chapel in Zillertal, Austria, among many others.
 

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