April 30, 2018
Keeping the Salt Out: PENETRON Waterproofs Mediterranean Hotel
Tunisia’s newest hotel, The Zodiac Hotel, opened March 2018, in the midst of Tunisia’s winter season, to welcome guests to its seaside location. With the saltwater environment, PENETRON ADMIX ensured a durable solution for all concrete pool structures.
Yasmine Hammamet is a sun-soaked resort on the Tunisian Mediterranean coast and provides a warm and friendly vacation destination for Europeans getting away from winter storms. With 97 rooms and suites on four floors, the Zodiac Hotel is the newest luxury hotel in Yasmine Hammamet, about 66 km (40 miles) south of Tunis, the capital of Tunisia. Only 300 m (1,000-feet) from the Mediterranean Ocean, the hotel complex includes heated swimming pools, a health and wellness spa, a kids’ zone with a variety of shallow pools, and poolside bars and restaurants.
“Building the hotel – with its network of swimming pools – so close to the ocean left the below-grade structures exposed to the saline groundwater,” said Kadem A. Omer, Chairman of the Board of the local Penetron office. “This made waterproofing of the concrete structures a top priority for the builder.”
Eliminating Chloride Penetration
The project contractor asked Penetron for a solution. A combination of PENETRON ADMIXand PENEBAR SW swellable waterstop strips was proposed. PENETRON ADMIX was used to waterproof the concrete matrix and PENEBAR SW waterstop strips sealed the construction joints, leaving the swimming pools impermeable to any chloride penetration.
The active ingredients in PENETRON ADMIX react with concrete minerals to form insoluble crystals, which fill in cracks, pores and voids. The resulting crystalline network keeps seawater from penetrating into the concrete, even when exposed to hydrostatic pressure. This makes the concrete matrix impermeable to any chloride penetration.
Lifetime Protection for Concrete
Ultimately, this makes PENETRON ADMIX-treated concrete impervious to corrosion of the reinforcement steel embedded in concrete, even in the aggressive saline environment encountered at Yasmine Hammamet. This protection lasts for the lifetime of the concrete – and encompasses a self-healing capability that automatically seals any new cracks that may appear.
“The Zodiac Hotel is state-of-the-art for Tunisia,” notes Mr. Omer. “Our crystalline technology ensures completely waterproof concrete structures, with the added benefit of a meaningful increase in durability.”