Aarhus Ø, a neighbourhood in the second-largest city of Denmark, has been under development for over a decade and has now become a sought-after hangout spot for both locals and visitors. Modern architecture buildings such as DOKK1 and the innovative apartment building Iceberg have risen at the platform by the waterfront transforming what was once an industrial area to a modern stylish district.
Now, with the Aarhus Harbor Bath inaugurated in July, locals and tourists have one more reason to visit the waterfront neighbourhood. Designed by world-class architecture company BIG, the new seawater bath features a 50-metre long lap pool, a circular diving pool, a children’s pool and two saunas. A wooden platform in the middle of the longest pool and around the smaller basins allows swimmers to catch their breath and soak up some sun before they dive back into the Aarhus Bay.
A red light switches on when the harbour bath is filled with over 650 people swimming or sunbathing, signalling that there is no more space in the bath at the specific time. But small cafés and the area’s picturesque promenade, which is ideal for a walk, will definitely keep latecomers occupied for a while.
Lifeguards on duty from July 1st to August 31st, changing facilities, outdoor showers, toilets and faucets for drinking water are placed in the harbour bath in order to make the visitors’ experience as smooth as possible. And with thousands of Danes having enjoyed the facilities up until now, it seems that the project has been more than successful, establishing the area as one of Aarhus’ most popular attractions.
Rabih Azad-Ahmad, Mayor of Sports, Culture and Citizen Services in Aarhus, told Lonely Planet that the reception of the harbour bath has been overwhelming and within the first week, more than 25,000 people have visited it. ‘It has become the meeting point we have dreamed of. The bath binds people together, and at the same time, it binds the city with the bay,’ he said.
And if you’re thinking that locals couldn’t have it any better, you might be pleasantly surprised. There are already plans for expanding the complex to include beach volleyball courts as well as bars and cafés in the near future.