Vitra Design Museum
Time Out says
This fabulous place pays homage to architecture and interior design by the world's best in their field.
A tad cheeky, perhaps, to claim the fabulous Vitra Design Museum for Basel as it lies just over the border in the German town of Weil am Rhein. But no art lover visits the city without making the peasy 30-minute city bus pilgrimage, and with good reason. Established by the eponymous Swiss furniture design company in 1989, the museum shares a sprawling campus with striking buildings by Zaha Hadid – her very first – and the Japanese boxer-turned architect Tadao Ando. The main building, a gleaming white deconstructivist tangle of curves and angular boxes, was Frank Gehry’s first European commission. And along with the Vitra House, a cantilevered stack of glass-ended longhouses by the Basel-based Tate Modern alchemists Herzog & de Meuron, it’s home to one of the world’s largest collections of modern furniture and lighting designs. This hinges mainly on bequests from the likes of Charles and Ray Eames, Alvar Aalto and Dieter Rams, and is beautifully presented across the two main spaces. Informative architectural and collection tours and a rolling programme of temporary exhibitions place the showcased designs and buildings in ever-evolving broader contexts.