Case Study: Centro Canalejas

May 3, 2024 Charlotte Dekker

“The main challenges of this - highly complex - project were related to achieving uniformity and homogeneity in the quality of light in all the spaces. eldoLED played a vital role in this respect.” - Antxon Janín, Difusiona

Centro Canalejas | Madrid (Spain)

Centro Canalejas Madrid is an iconic element of Madrid’s 21st century restored center. This unique project, completed in 2020, recovered seven historic buildings, in different styles. The resulting state-of-the-art leisure and tourism complex features a luxury hotel operated by the Four Seasons chain, 15,000 m2 retail area and luxury homes. Centro Canalejas Madrid invested more than €5 million. Every item of historical or artistic value in the original buildings had to be preserved, so the facades and bays of the oldest buildings were conserved and restored, along with several interior elements such as skylights, metalwork and wood joinery. Enhancing the inner courtyard and maintaining the aesthetics of the inner courtyard were key.

The main challenges of this - highly complex - project were related to achieving uniformity and homogeneity in the quality of light in all the spaces,” explains Antxon Janín, Managing Director at Difusiona. “eldoLED played a vital role in this respect. A project made with the best materials and luminaires, in a luxury environment, requires drivers of the highest quality and durability, with the best performance on the market. In this specific project the eldoLED drivers were selected by the specifier in charge of the project, but even without this specification we would have chosen eldoLED for its quality anyway.”

Throughout the project  luminaires of LightGraphix, LEDlinear and Wibre were used in combination with Lutron controls and eldoLED drivers: SOLOdrive 20W, 30W and 100W, LINEARdrive 200W and  720W.  

Balancing Uniformity and Detail

Lighting design was created by Anoche Iluminación Arquitectónica. The aim was to highlights individual details and characteristics of each of the buildings while establishing a coherent whole. Prior to the proposal, all the details and historical elements of the building were meticulously revised. This made it possible to determine how to illuminate opening, molding, column, vertical element and detail. Architectural firm Estudio Lamela managed to unify lighting while highlighting each of the accesses to the complex - the hotel, dwellings and shopping gallery – in a different way. Difusiona, specialists in interior and exterior lighting supported the designers with know-how of the behavior of light in spaces, durability and efficiency.

From a distance, the building is uniformly illuminated. However, as visitors draw closer, they are captivated by the details. Vertical lighting enhances architectural lines and in addition, the base and crown of the building are highlighted horizontally. Discrete luminaires and bespoke shielding elements were used throughout this project, and natural light levels were taken into account to reduce energy consumption and light pollution. A large inner courtyard provides ventilation and natural lighting to all floors and a smaller one illuminates specific areas of the hotel, such as the spa.

LIT Light Design Award

 In 2021, the new Centro Canalejas in Madrid won the international LIT Light Design Award in the ‘Exterior Architectural Illumination’ category. In recognition of its commitment to sustainability the complex obtained LEED Gold certification in 2022. Furthermore, the Four Seasons Hotel in Canalejas Center was selected as one of the best three hotels in Europe in the Prix Versailles 2021 awards.

Photography: Alvaro Valdecantos & Imagen Subliminal

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