- About Dudok
- Architecture by Dudok
- Architecture Hilversum
- About DAC
Landgoed Zonnestraal, located south of Hilversum, is best known for the former Zonnestraal sanatorium, which is internationally regarded as one of the masterpieces of architecture from the ‘Nieuwe Bouwen’ period. Less well known is that wine is also made on the estate. The estate’s former vegetable garden contains three thousand vines of four different grape varieties. Passionate winemaker Alfred Visser (1955-2021) started producing his ‘Gooise’ wines here in 2014.
In the nineteenth century, about one in a hundred Dutch people died of tuberculosis. In 1905, trade union leader Jan van Zutphen (1863-1958) founded the ‘Koperen Stelen Fonds Nieuwe Levenskracht’ (Copper Steel Fund New Life Forces) to combat tuberculosis among workers in the Amsterdam diamond industry. With the proceeds from the sale of copper stems, a waste product from diamond processing, workers could be accommodated in sanatoria and the family members financially supported. In 1919, the support fund bought the 116-hectare estate Pampahoeve near the Loosdrechtse Plassen for the foundation of a self-sufficient labor and aftercare colony for TB patients.
The architects Jan Duiker (1890-1935) and Bernard Bijvoet (1889-1979) and engineer Jan Gerko Wiebenga (1886-1974) were commissioned by Van Zutphen to design a sanatorium complex on the estate. Light, air and space was the adage. The buildings of the sanatorium consisted of little more than a reinforced concrete skeleton, closed with a membrane of glass, steel and stucco. Maintaining the buildings was part of the patients’ occupational therapy. The sanatorium, which served until the early 1950s, was given the name Zonnestraal.
Light, air and space applied not only to the architecture but also to the recovery program of the sick workers. Working in the open air should contribute to recovery. The landscape was maintained by the patients as part of the occupational therapy. The site contained many trees, vegetable gardens, fruit orchards, flower gardens, animal enclosures, grasslands and farmland for the benefit of Zonnestraal. The patients were able to work in the workshops and on the estate to speed up recovery.
The old vegetable garden of the Zonnestraal estate, located between the forest and the Rading, has been given a second life as a vineyard. Tenant Alfred Visser started clearing and plowing the land in February 2014 and planted 300 vines. A year later there were 3000 with four different grape varieties. Visser was born and raised in Hilversummer, but lived in Canada for many years. During his work in the hospitality industry, he gained a lot of experience with viticulture in North and South America and Europe. In the autumn of 2016, Wijngaard Zonnestraal produced its first real ‘Gooische wine’.
Rading 105, Loosdrecht