The luxurious Shard
London’s The Shard or Shard of Glass, designed by Italian architect Renzo Piano, is the tallest building in Europe with its 310 metres. It stands on a site of a non-existent building which was torn down because of its derelict state. The main investor and owner of the building with a 95% share is the emirate of Qatar, which spent 450 million pounds on its construction.
The building’s name is reflected in its geometry, which truly resembles a shard of glass in its sharpness. Others find it reminiscent of a salt shaker. What is certain is that it has forever changed the panorama of the Thames. The luxurious skyscraper is covered from end to end with glass panels over an area of 56,000 square metres.
Layout of the famous building
The building has 72 luxury residences, which the 15 additional floors form the glass superstructure. The first 28 floors offer office space for 7,000 people and according to the architect, the bottom layers should blend in with the surroundings, while the structure should dwindle going upwards. The next two floors house 2 restaurants, the Shangri-La Hotel, and another 12 floors contain private apartments and viewing platforms for the general public.
Author’s inspiration by luxury
It comes from a painting by Italian artist Canaletta from the 18th Century, in which we can see London as a plain with protruding church towers. The top of The Shard just into the sky with equal sharpness. The shape and location of the building next to the historical Tower Bridge were a target of criticism from the public and royal family alike. Prince Charles spoke quite negatively about the structure. In his view, London is changing into an absurd picnic table. Either way, it is an important step towards the general progress of humanity in the 21st Century.