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wv-studio: Hotel Nice to meet you!

A home away from home

Transformation of disused office buildings into a mixed use program:
Hotel and shelter for refugees
Status: Competition - 1st prize
Year: 2016
Program: Hotel and short-stay apartments which can be transformed into apartment building
Gross floor area: N.a.
Location: Various locations in the Netherlands
In collaboration with: Micha de Haas and Rik Tuithof

In collaboration with Micha de Haas and Rik Tuithof we won the ‘Home away from home’ design competition. This competition was organised by the Dutch Chief Government Architect (Rijksbouwmeester) and the Dutch Central Government Body for Refugees in the Netherlands (COA).


Vacant government buildings are transformed into a combination of a hotel and housing for refugees. This combined program provides a flexible solution to a fluctuating number of refugees: When the number of refugees decreases, more hotel rooms will become available and vice versa. 


Social integration and dignity: 

The combination of hotel and housing for refugees also provides social opportunities: Refugees can work in the hotel which allows them to contribute something to society and gives them a sense of purpose. Volunteers who are helping the refugees can stay in the hotel next to other visitors like tourists and people travelling for work. The hotel lobby, restaurant and business centre of the hotel offer a space for refugees to meet the other visitors and share their culture.

wv-studio: Hotel Nice to meet you!


The facilities of the refugee hotel are available to the direct neighbourhood. These are hotel facilities like a restaurant, bar and gym or facilities associated with housing for refugees like a GP clinic, day care centre or flexible working places.  The refugee hotel brings job opportunities and provides a solution for derelict government buildings. It can give a positive impuls to local shops and schools.


The refugee hotel gives the Dutch Central Government Body for Refugees a flexible solution with an on-demand volume of housing for refugees. On the long term, the transformation of derelict government buildings improves the real estate value. When the number of refugees decreases over time, the refugee hotel can be transformed into social housing. In this way the initial investment that is used for housing refugees will give a boost to the social housing stock.

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