Schtroumph Buildings, Geneva

Schtroumph Buildings, Geneva

Designed and built between 1982 and 1984 by Swiss architects Christian Hunziger, Robert Frei and Georges Berthoud, this odd-looking housing complex with whimsical details – irregular angles, curved walls and wrought iron railings without a single straight line, and with pops of color, both inside and out – was clearly inspired by Catalan architect Antoni Gaudì.

The sheer surrealism of the architecture prompted the locals to jokingly refer to it as the “Schtroumpf” buildings, a made-up word translated into Dutch as “smurf”, taken from a Belgian comic franchise centered on a fictional colony of small, blue, human-like creatures who live in mushroom-shaped houses in the forest.

The four buildings complex contains 170 city-subsidized apartments for rent, plus a number of office spaces on the ground floor, a pole dance studio, doctors’ offices, a small theater and a café.

Albeit open to viewing only from the outside, the peculiar buildings are quite fun to look at. On Thursdays, there is a very funky local market at La Place des Grottes.

Want to visit this sight? Check out these Self-Guided Walking Tours in Geneva. Alternatively, you can download the mobile app "GPSmyCity: Walks in 1K+ Cities" from iTunes App Store or Google Play. The app turns your mobile device to a personal tour guide and it works offline, so no data plan is needed when traveling abroad.

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Schtroumph Buildings on Map

Sight Name: Schtroumph Buildings
Sight Location: Geneva, Switzerland (See walking tours in Geneva)
Sight Type: Attraction/Landmark
Guide(s) Containing This Sight:

Walking Tours in Geneva, Switzerland

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