Philippine Daily Inquirer
LEICA CAMERA AG CELEBRATES OPENING OF ITS NEW LEITZ PARK COMPLEX IN WETZLAR
research, art and culture enter into a symbiosis that will attract photo enthusiasts from around the world. Providing a total of around 1,200 jobs, the entire site makes an important contribution to the region in many ways and will bring significant benefits for the City of Wetzlar and the tourist industry,” explains Dr. Andreas Kaufmann.
The new campus is home to four building complexes, one of which is the recently opened Arcona Living Ernst Leitz Hotel, featuring 129 rooms, apartments and suites and an interior architecture and design concept that reflects numerous aspects of photography. Hotel Director Dirk Kagel, who was also there at the event, represented the Arcona hotel group that manages the hotel. Over 250 works created by more than 60 photographers were carefully cu- rated and displayed in all parts of the hotel.
Beside the hotel is the new Leica building, which contains the museum, the archives, a photo studio, a Leica Store and the museum shop. One very interesting key feature of the building is its balcony on the top floor, which is designed to look like a Leica rangefinder when viewed on the facade. The museum is an important element of the Leitz-Park concept, and as Dr. Kaufmann puts it, “It forms a key strategy on what we do in Leica and how our cameras influence photography.” The museum will house Leica products made in the past, illustrating its entire history – from microscopes and cameras to sport optics products. Currently, the museum is celebrating its anniversary exhibition, “Eyes wide open! 100 years of Leica photography” which showcases images including original prints by acclaimed Leica photographers together with numerous exhibits from 100 years of 35 mmphotography.
The campus also houses the new head office of Ernst Leitz Wetzlar GmbH (formerly known as CW Sonderoptic GmbH). Founded in 2008, the company quickly earned an outstanding reputation for film and optics, garnering numerous awards. In 2015, its Leica Summilux-C lenses played a role in the winning of four Oscars by the film “Birdman,” and earned the development team the highest film-industry accolade for technical products and innovations, the “Sci-Tech Award”, also known as the “Technical Oscar”.
The whole complex was designed and developed Frankfurt architects Gruber + KleineKraneburg. Their vision is a creating an ultra-modern working environment and visitor experience in which research and development, production, and science meet culture, gastronomy and living in harmonious unity.