The masting houses were built in 1748-71 and served an important purpose in outfitting the ships of the Danish navy. These were the buildings where the navy’s masts were stored over the winter.
The masting houses include seven interconnected half-timbered buildings, each with its own separate tiled roof, based on an impressive timber frame of beams and posts. The gables face the water, allowing for the masts to be sailed directly into the masting houses.
Eventually, the masting houses became obsolete to the navy due to the advance of new technologies. Therefore, the listed buildings long stood abandoned, until in 2007 the decision was made to restore them. Maali & Lalanda Architects were given the assignment of reviving the masting houses. The challenge was to preserve the unique architecture and construction while preparing the rooms for activities that would bring life to the area around Holmen, the islet in Copenhagen Harbour where the masting houses are located.
Maali & Lalanda carried out a restoration that managed to make the most of the qualities of the Dinesen floor. Dinesen supplied a total of 1,000 m2 of Douglas planks, which beautifully tie in the old hand-crafted beams, wooden joints and metal fittings in the listed buildings with more modern architectural solutions, such as the new glass facades. The exterior cladding consists of Dinesen Douglas planks painted red.
Today, the masting houses represent a successful meeting between two eras and house a number of design studios in a historical setting.