Located on the lively Copacabana beachfront, in the Brazilian capital of Rio de Janeiro, is the glamorous Belmond Copacabana Palace. Having stood for a century since its opening in 1923, The hotel has everything a holiday hotspot should offer – comfortable rooms, a large swimming pool, and dining and drinking establishments.
Given its age, the site has undergone a number of improvements, renovations and refurbishments since its opening. Most recently, the hotel’s façade was reimagined to celebrate the Copacabana Palace’s centenary.
LD Studio, an award-winning design and lighting company, was commissioned to complete the renovation of the façade Lighting. Led by architect and certified lighting designer Monica Luz Lobo, LD Studio created a unique project that brings together the tradition of the famed hotel, with a contemporary appeal.
To ensure they could secure the best possible results, LD Studio wanted to work with a trusted LED manufacturer that offered everything needed to bring the design to life. Monica specified an array of solutions from leading LED specialist Tryka.
The façade is now illuminated using a combination of Tryka’s Stripline45, Stripline AG, Aura 5 and Aura 7. Stripline is a range of high-end architectural linear solutions in different sizes, with an IP rating of 66, making it suitable for external settings. Aura is a family of architectural accent fixtures, ideal for highlighting features and details on a building.
Custom glare shields were designed and supplied by Tryka for the Stripline and Aura solutions, which also housed the LED drivers. These were finished in a custom-selected RAL to match the design and shade of the newly-renovated façade.
Specifically, for the Stripline luminaires, while these use Tryka’s integral DMC IC with a remote 24C driver, the remote driver has been integrated into the glare shield, so it is local to the fixture. This design guarantees ease of servicing and maintenance, which is crucial in such a large-scale installation.
Adding a finishing touch, Tryka’s flexible linear Continuity T has been utilised. Some areas of the building required a standard profile, while others had an L-shaped profile. The Continuity T provided the ideal solution, as it could be wall-mounted with the light washing up or down, rather than pointing outwards.
All of the solutions from Tryka are RGB+27K. This was a vital part of the specification, and Tryka was the only manufacturer that could provide the 2700K needed for the white channel in conjunction with the required RGB outputs.
One of the biggest challenges in completing the project was the short timescales for the scale of the work. This meant all project partners had to be dynamic and work outside of their usual processes and strategies; ensuring that not only was the project completed within an incredibly tight deadline, but it delivered everything needed to bring the Copacabana Palace Hotel back to life.
Monica Luz Lobo said: “The success of this project, especially given the short deadline, relied on all partners working symbiotically. Tryka was an excellent choice of manufacturer; working alongside us to fulfil everything we needed. We built such an excellent working relationship with their team, it felt as though we had known each other for years.”
The illumination of the façade will ensure that the hotel’s beauty and renowned architecture can be appreciated even during the hours of darkness. Details and unique elements of the building are now revealed at night using light, allowing them to be explored in a soft and elegant manner.
The lighting has been commissioned with a control system that enables the hotel’s façade to be illuminated in different colours and themes. All luminaires are individually addressed on a DMX system, controlled by an LPC2 from Pharos Architectural Controls, and triggered by an iPad touch interface.
The colours and patterns can be personalised to match a variety of occasions and calendar dates. These include international celebrations such as Christmas and New Year and national events including Carnival.
Alongside the new lighting, the façade has been beautifully restored to reveal the original look and feel of 100 years ago. The façade has been painted in a unique shade of pearly white, the windows have been restored, and the colour of the handrails and vertical structures has been returned to the original shade.
The hotel’s transformative overhaul has ensured the location remains young and attractive and aligns with the positivity and hopefulness of the city itself.
Monica added: “The Copacabana Palace Hotel is undoubtedly glamorous and sophisticated, yet it represents a piece of all of us. It celebrates Rio as a city, the Brazilian way of life, our history, and our future. As a must-see destination for visitors to Rio, we are thrilled to have been part of this beautiful project.”