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Roche Tower aka Building 1 | © Christian Allinger / Flickr
Roche Tower aka Building 1 | © Christian Allinger / Flickr
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The Most Impressive Buildings in Basel, Switzerland

Picture of Sean Mowbray
Updated: 17 August 2017
Basel, Switzerland’s third largest city, has a rich historical past and is also home to many wealthy pharmaceutical companies, making it a hot spot for interesting architecture. Here are the most impressive buildings that you should look out for.
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Roche Tower

At 178 metres high, the Roche Tower is the tallest building in Switzerland. It was completed in September 2015 and overtook Zurich’s Prime Tower which stands at 126 metres. The building cost 550 million Swiss Francs to build and was funded the Roche, the pharmaceutical giant that has its headquarters in Switzerland. The sky-scraping building is rather flatly called “Building 1”, which admittedly is a less impressive feat of creativity.

Grenzacherstrasse 124, Basel, +41-61-688 1111

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Goetheanum

The Goetheanum stands 10 kilometres outside of Basel in nearby Dornach. It was built for the Anthroposophical Society, a group whose aim is “to nurture the life of the soul”. Inside its bizarre shape is enough space for two performance halls, a library and left over space for the Society members to go about their daily work. Visitors are welcome.

Rüttiweg 45, 4143 Dornach, +41 61 706 42 42

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Markthalle

Basel’s Markthalle isn’t just a great place to eat, it’s also a cool piece of architecture in its own right. From the outside it looks a little run down but inside, you can marvel at the massive dome with a glass covered oculus in the centre, while scoffing on some good food.

Steinentorberg 20, Basel

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Novartis Campus

Home to another pharmaceutical giant, the Novartis Campus is an impressive, if not slightly overwhelming blend of curving metal and reflective glass designed by Italian architect Vittorio Magnago Lampugnani. Unfortunately, the site is closed to the public, but you can still admire it from the outside.

Fabrikstrasse 2, Basel, +41 61 324 11 11

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Basel Minster

It is hard to miss Basel Minster. The red Cathedral’s twin towers dominates the inner city’s skyline. The building was started around 1019 and continually added to until it was completed around the 1500s, resulting in a blend of Romanesque and Gothic styles.

Münsterplatz 9, Basel

Museum Tinguely

The Museum Tinguely is one of Basel’s top art museums dedicated to the works of Jean Tinguely. Fittingly, it’s housed in an rather interesting building. The design was thought up by Mario Botta and completed in 1996.