HyundaiCard Air Lounge

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HyundaiCard Air Lounge | Notes of Interest

Located at Incheon Airport in Korea, this 250 sm project seeks to create an exclusive environment to offer unique travel assistance for HyundaiCard Black members. As a counterpoint to the surrounding visual noise and frenzied airport activity, the proposed parti is deceptively simple, with functions arranged in a freestanding “black box”.

Much like a perfectly organized suitcase, this monolithic object contains all the information, accessories, entertainment, and gifts needed for a memorable travel experience. The HyundaiCard space shifts the paradigm of a traditional lounge by combining lounge, retail, and museum programs. Rather than a static place for waiting, it is a dynamic space one passes through to better prepare for the trip ahead. As such, visitors are able to pace their movements through the space according to individual needs, desires, and schedules.

Among the unique features in the lounge are a custom vending machine, fantastic dream-like art movies by Hiraki Sawa, and a personalized flight tracking system. Also, there are two virtual skylights in the black box, both of which move slowly through the color spectrum of the sky. These spaces act as haven-like environments in which travelers become aware of the sky's variations, thus establishing a symbolic, if not poetic relationship with the notion of air travel.

Within the constraint of a small envelope, reflective surfaces provide visual relief while cove lighting plays up the ethereal atmosphere of the space.

Additional Credit

Consultant: Laschober + Sovitch
Engineer: Kesson International
Lighting: Kaplan Gehring McCarroll

Photo Credit

© Ryan Gobuty

HyundaiCard Air Lounge

  • Architect: Gensler
  • Owner: HyundaiCard Company
  • Location: Incheon International Airport, South Korea

Jury Comments

The project takes an innovative approach to the airline lounge model, effectively establishing a unique relationship between the passenger and the space.

The well-conceived assimilation of technology engages the traveler in both the "black box" and the surrounding walls that integrate the helpful passenger flight status flip-screens.

Extraordinarily clean detailing that does not come at the expense of function or friendliness.

2012 Institute Honor Awards for Interior Architecture Jury

  • Elizabeth Corbin Murphy, FAIA, Chair
  • CMB Architects
  • Akron
  • Robert Allen, Jr., AIA
  • Metalhouse
  • Norwalk, Connecticut
  • Mark Jensen, AIA
  • Jensen Architects
  • San Francisco
  • David Lenox, AIA
  • University Architect/Dir. Campus Planning
  • Stanford University
  • Palo Alto, California
  • Erick S. Ragni, AIA
  • MaRS Architects
  • Houston

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