The Center (HPC) Viana do Castelo

The Portuguese Institute of Sport and Youth and the Viana do Castelo Municipality signed a cooperation agreement for the construction of the Surf High Performance Centre Viana do Castelo (HPC) in 2009.

The government defined the mission of the Surf High Performance Center is to serve primarily the needs of the sports federations, aiming to achieve the following objectives:

– Enabling training camps and enhance sports talents;
– Integrating scientific research in terms of sports performance;
– Assess, monitor and optimize training;
– Deepen the technical development;
– Monitor results, detect and select sports talents.


The HPC is the operational base for all disciplines that make up the Portuguese Surfing Federation. Located on the beach of Cabedelo, it integrates the features of local life and climate.

Its sustainable building, designed by White Knight Architects in 2009 is based on two aspects: the use of sustainable, environmental friendly materials in connection with the efficient energy performance of the building (low energy consumption through the use of natural energy).

The implementation of the building represents a constructive solution that sought to respect the dune relief through a system of pillars that lift the building of the ground surface, allowing normal dune rearrangement. Existing pine trees were kept on the periphery of the building and in the outdoor area.

A coating for thermal insulation of black cork agglomerate was implemented. This is of particular importance, since its implementation insulates the building and enhances it’s relationship with nature. Cork has a leading position in the Portuguese economy, both in terms of production as in industrial processing. Portugal is the worlds largest cork producer and this is one of the national higher value exports.

Cork is a 100% natural, recyclable, non-toxic and durable. In the process of manufacturing products with this raw material 100% of it is utilized, has the expeditious waste is continually reused for cork agglomerates.It has also an important role as a barrier against desertification of soils, provides micro ecosystems of high biodiversity and contributes to CO2 fixation.

Thereby the building profits from excellent thermal insulation qualities. The implementation of the outer insulation ETICS (External Thermal Insulation Composite Systems) endows the “skin effect” that functions as an outer barrier, minimizing thermal flow.

Furthermore a geothermic system regulates the interior temperature of the building, solar panels warm up the domestic water system and the building is also equipped with low-energy cost LED lights.

The thermal level of the building has an energy rating of A+.

In the north wing there are a total of 30 beds, divided into seven bedrooms, served by collective support facilities, changing rooms and showers. On the south side are the training rooms, boiler room, support changing rooms, medical office, massage and recovery room. On the ground floor is located the hall to storage boards, technical material and also an innovation room. In the entrance area are the lounge areas, kitchen, reception and administrative offices.