Oppdal is a dispersed, mountain village with wide vistas in all directions. The mountains framing the village are big and powerful, yet at the same time gentle and rolling. It is this setting which gives Oppdal such a strong character which it is not easily overshadowed by human activities and technology.
Oppdal is one of Norway’s leading alpine ski centre, encompassing four areas interlinked by modern ski lifts. The mountain Hovden, hosting the Ski restaurant, at an elevation of 1117 meters, is situated directly above the village centre.
A concrete structure containing the water tower and cooling equipment for artificial snow making was built on top of the mountain in 1998. Many believed this was a dramatic imposition on the landscape. The architectural challenge became to camouflage the water tower with a restaurant and viewing platform so that it would be positively perceived as a landmark both day and night – as if a UFO had landed on the peak. The restaurant is located next to the top lift station and is built to harmonize with it.
From the restaurant there is a magnificent panorama through the 180° glazed wall. The glass is set at a 15° angle as in an airport control tower to avoid reflections in the glass from the sun during the day and artificial light at night.