To the overview

A place to enjoy - Swiss made

Best view relations on Stuttgart's half height

In 2015, Andy Bössow, who loves distilling, received a tip from an acquaintance that there was a distillery for sale in Thurgau. Without hesitation, he flew back to Switzerland with his wife Martina and their two children from Dubai, where he was currently living. Shortly after, he acquired "Macardo" and inspired Master Distiller Bartholomäus Fink for their project. With Swissness, tradition, innovation, craftsmanship, premium quality and sustainability, the distillery in Strohwilen, near the German border near Constance, gained an excellent reputation among connoisseurs worldwide. Production doubled until 2018, when Andy and Martina Bössow decided to buy a nearby former cheese dairy with two pigsties.

The concept: tradition combines with modernity

Together with the architects Ava Monshi-Öttl and Florian Öttl, Munich, a concept for the new world of Macardo was created. In addition to increasing the production rate and consolidating storage, the main goal of the new building was to make the brand "experienceable" for an international audience as well. In addition to a store area, an Honesty Bar with Smoker Lounge, a premium B&B with ten rooms, business apartments and an event location for the live distillery and tasting events were created at the same time.

The implementation: the product as the center

The listed cheese dairy building was preserved as a solitaire and production facility, equipped with the latest distillery technology and integrated into the sustainable overall energy (recovery) concept. The L-shaped new building takes up the roof slopes and proportions of the old building and, facing the cantonal road in the west with the barrel store, acts as a fully glazed shop window. Towards the interior, it forms a central, inviting courtyard to the entrance and store area. The five south-facing roof gables of different heights trace the natural course of the terrain and adapt the ensemble to the topology. Most importantly, they provide the setting for all ten B&B rooms to enjoy spectacular views of Mount Säntis and the Swiss Alps. Outside, the large south-facing terrace connects the Honesty Bar with the lounge and the event/multifunction/breakfast room.

A walk through the building ensemble makes the architectural concept visible. The central courtyard opens up a dialog between the old and new buildings. From there, the eye is intuitively guided to the fully glazed and generously roofed entrance facade. Five three-meter-wide steps lead from the double-height entrance and store area to the lounge. If the space condenses for a moment, it then opens up again through the floor-to-ceiling windows with a phenomenal view of the surrounding landscape and the Swiss Alps. The colors of the façade are inspired by the autumnal surroundings - when the regional ingredients for the Macardo Swiss Distillery products are harvested.

Also the interior design - very close to the product

Together with the general contractor Konrad Knoblauch GmbH, a concept for the interior design was developed. It was quickly agreed to stay very close to the actual product for Macardo. The oak wood refines the taste of whisky & co. in the barrel. It also gives the rooms at Macardo their own touch. The different characters of natural and burnt oak represent the most important design element. Depending on the desired atmosphere, light and almost black woods were weighted. Offset mounted glass panes in shades of yellow form a colorful accent as room dividers. Not only do they evoke the multi-layered distillate in the glass swivel, they also create spatial depth that is enhanced in sunlight.

The exposed concrete and the open conduits on the ceilings give the ensemble a handcrafted rough expression. Each room and apartment in the B&B Hotel was equipped with an individual color concept.

Sustainable operating and energy concept

The water from the fresh water source belonging to the property is not only used for the production of the mash (raw material before the fermentation process) and for cleaning the distillation equipment, it is also used for the necessary, targeted cooling of the distillate. The waste heat from the fermentation and distilling processes and the burnt-out still tank is recovered and fed into the 6 m³ storage tank. From there, the heat is used either to preheat the fresh mash or by the reversible heat pump.

The reversible geothermal heat pump (heating or cooling) is fed by ten geothermal probes, each 200 m deep, and produces the hot heating and domestic water. The electricity for the heat pump as well as for the chargers for the electric cars and e-bikes is supplied by the installed photovoltaic system, which is designed with more than 100 kWp or 85,000 kWh per year.

"The distillates are distilled with wood (renewable raw material), external sun protection, triple glazing, high insulation values for windows, facade and roof, use of rainwater and gray water as well as the transfer of stillage (as a waste product) to a biogas plant complete the complex and sustainable operating and overall energy concept of the Macardo Swiss Distillery.

The brand world

The overall project presented in Strohwilen has created a place for the Macardo brand: generous glazing allows views from the outside into the distillery but also into the barrel warehouse, where the whisky and spirits mature over the years. There are also direct lines of sight from the store area, the Honesty Bar and the office area into the barrel warehouse. Here it becomes clear that the focus of the "Macardo" brand world is the product - or rather "the" products. The new building was awarded the ICONIC Award for Innovative Architecture in 2021.

The Macardo Swiss Premium Whisky, also called "The Swiss one" - the Swiss among the world-class whiskies - as well as the "Swiss Thurbon" are the classics and enjoy an international reputation. But now the range also includes gin, sloe gin, rum, vodka, vermouth, vieilles and marc brandies - all produced with the same care, passion and innovation.

©Author: Klaus Bossert

To the article

Macardo - Roof structure attached to the Churfirsten mountains
Macardo Swiss Distillery
Macardo Swiss Distillery