Green Revolution in Venice - Sustainable Project and Historical Restoration

Interview with Stefano Maestri from Arch 967

Stefano Maestri, architect and founder of the studio Arch 967, reveals the behind-the-scenes of their exciting project on the island of Murano, in the Venetian lagoon, in front of Venice. Arch 967 shares a passion for historical restoration and sustainability and is pursuing an innovative idea: transforming two former glassworks into a charming mix of residences and a hotel. But that's not all: during the interview, we will also discover their approach to greenery as a design tool, which is gaining increasing relevance in their work.

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Stefano, let's start with the Venice project, which excites us a lot. What are you developing, and what are the current design themes?

Yes, the Venice project is truly fascinating for us. We are working on the restoration of two former glassworks on the island of Murano. We believe that, in this historical moment, it is crucial to focus on restoration rather than new constructions. So, the idea of intervening in a historical and museum territory like Venice is very stimulating for us. Of course, working in such a unique context requires meticulous organization, but we are ready to face the challenges ahead.


I noticed that in recent years, you have expanded your design scope, moving from offices to residences, museum spaces, and even sustainable projects like the one in Venice. What prompted this evolution?

Exactly, our studio was initially focused on designing headquarters for multinational companies and office spaces, but we soon extended our activities to residences. In recent years, the Italian real estate market has seen significant development in the hospitality and accommodation sector, so we also ventured in that direction. The Venice project, for example, will transform the glassworks into both a residence and a hotel, combining different aspects of our work.


I was impressed by your approach to greenery as a design tool, going beyond mere aesthetic considerations. Could you explain it further?

Absolutely! Greenery, for us, is not just a garnish or decorative detail. We have noticed that, especially after the pandemic, there is a growing attention from clients to outdoor spaces. In the Venice project, we are developing a very interesting idea by using the concept of "barene" within the Venetian Lagoon. These are emerged areas with native edible species, which will allow us to create a truly sustainable project. The goal is to make greenery an integral part of the design and harness the natural resources of the location without using freshwater, an approach that excites us a lot.


Fantastic! And finally, is there a keyword that defines your way of designing?

Certainly, two interconnected keywords are "listening" and "storytelling." Listening is crucial from the early stages of the project because it allows us to better understand the needs of the client, the property, and our colleagues. Storytelling, on the other hand, helps us create a meaningful connection between the project and its purpose, making it more engaging and understandable for everyone.

With this interview with Stefano Maestri from Arch 967, we have discovered the secrets of their exciting project in Venice and their innovative approach to greenery as a design tool. The attention to historical restoration, sustainability, and collaboration among professionals are the pillars that guide the work of Arch 967, making them prominent figures in the world of Italian architecture. We look forward to seeing the project come to life and discovering the surprises it holds for the residents of Murano island and the visitors of Venice.

Interview by Giorgio Tartaro

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