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5 of the Most Beautiful Hospitals in the World

What do you picture when you hear the word “hospital?” Are you picturing blank white walls? Cracked tile and flickering fluorescent lighting perhaps? While that may be the reality in some cases, hospital architecture has evolved beautifully over the years. At some point, someone finally realized that hospitals’ designs should be awe-inspiring.


Take a look at these five examples of beautiful hospital architecture and design that defy our notion that medical facilities must look clinical in order to be functional.

1. Winnie Palmer Hospital for Women and Babies
pic1Image via Wikimedia

The Winnie Palmer Hospital for Women in Babies, designed by Jonathan Bailey Associates, first graced the Orlando skyline in 2006. Its three dark glass towers rise from a triangular base, and the entire structure looks more like a hotel than a hospital.

The interior is no different; each patient room was designed to promote the highest level of privacy. The exterior’s glass panels bring in floods of natural lighting, while calming color tones make up the interior. The triangular, towering layout helps simplify monitoring activities and makes it easier for patients and staff to move around.

2. Klinik Hirslanden
pic2Image via Wikimedia

The sleek Klinik Hirslanden in Zurich, Switzerland established the country’s first CyberKnife radiosurgery unit, but that’s not the only thing revolutionary about this hospital. Hirslanden’s modern, hotel-like design is complemented by a dedicated housekeeping service that tends to each of the 150 beds’ fresh flowers, full-sized baths, Internet, and a guest services program that tends to individual patients’ personal concerns.

3. Henry Ford West Bloomfield Hospital
pic3Image via Newswise

Erected in 2009 by Albert Kahn Associates out of regionally sourced materials, Henry Ford West Bloomfield Hospital is considered a standard-setter of the healthcare industry. Patients receive treatment in an environment unlike any other: surrounded by greenery. There are more than 20,000 plants peppering the hospital’s campus. If you’re currently in school to get your nursing degree, you’d be hard-pressed to find a more beautiful work environment than this hospital. And, not only is it beautiful, but it’s also LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environment Design) certified, with a natural heating and cooling system as well as a rainwater collection and filtration system. Everything about this hospital is green!

4. Richard Desmond Children’s Eye Center

pic4Image via Flickr

It’s no secret that children usually aren’t big fans of hospitals. That’s why architects Penoyre and Prasad worked diligently to design a kid-friendly space with Richard Desmond Children’s Eye Center in London where children could feel at ease. Aluminum projections on the hospital’s façade limit solar heating as well as catch the eye, and at night the exterior is awash in brightly colored lights.

5. Rush University Medical Center
pic5Image via Wikimedia

Newly opened in 2012, Rush University Medical Center in Chicago underwent an extreme makeover. Its new unique design is fantastically modern, considering the facility has been around for 175 years. Architectural firm Perkins+Will wanted to ensure they were creating an ideal working and healing environment, so they worked closely with the hospital’s staff and its users while making design decisions. 

Each of these hospitals offer patients a safe, beautiful place to heal, and staff have the opportunity to work in an atmosphere hat boosts morale and calms the nerves despite a sometimes chaotic environment.

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