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Spirit Lake Casino & Resort regains its renowned views with SageGlass dynamic glass

Apr. 29, 2015

Spirit Lake Casino & Resort in St. Michael, North Dakota, is using electronically tintable SageGlass®, a product of Saint-Gobain, to give guests breathtaking views of the natural surroundings, despite a challenging solar glare problem.

The casino, owned by the Spirit Lake Tribe Nation, is perched upon a peaceful island bluff in Devil’s Lake on the Spirit Lake reservation. The tribe recently remodeled its upscale restaurant called The View as part of a $14 million renovation project to expand its food service business and enhance the fine dining experience.

As its name implies, the 7,100-square-foot restaurant is renowned for its circular 180-degree view of Devil’s Lake, the marina and beautiful wilderness. Prior to the renovation, the northwest-facing dining room was forced to pull the window shades during the day due to blinding glare from the sun, negating the facility’s key selling point.

“The glare and heat were particularly bad during the summer and winter months due to the angle of sun,” said Mark Matheny, project manager at the casino. “The restaurant, which is on the third floor of the casino, offered the best view on the island. But we couldn’t take advantage of it on sunny days.”

To solve the problem the tribe working with the architect, selected SageGlass dynamic glass to be installed in the large, two-story curtain wall. SageGlass is electronically tintable dynamic glass that darkens or clears automatically in response to the sun’s movements throughout the day while preserving the outdoor views.

“Because of the open view there was a lot of glare from the sun coming into the restaurant. We wanted a curtain wall system that would mitigate that,” said Leap Chear, senior architect with EAPC, a full-service architectural and engineering firm. “SageGlass enabled us to preserve the view and still perform as a vantage point with a prime lake view for a fine dining experience.”

Today, diners can enjoy the wonderful views all hours of the day, regardless of the weather conditions. As the sun sweeps across the 180-degree horizon, each of four zones of SageGlass tints automatically in synchronicity with the sun’s movement.

Energy efficiency was another key design objective for using SageGlass, Matheny said. “With each new construction project we strive to incorporate more green building technologies. SageGlass helps save us money by reducing the air condition cooling load in the restaurant during hot, sunny days,” he said.

Chear added that durability was another driver for choosing SageGlass. “Because of its northwest facing orientation on top of a bluff there were no barriers to block the wind. We needed a curtain wall system that would be able to combat the elements and sustain high wind loads,” he said.

SageGlass has been tested in a range of harsh environmental conditions for more than 15 years. The glass has outperformed standards in durability tests by independent third-party organizations including the US Department of Energy (DOE) and major industry glass companies. Its all-ceramic coatings are extremely durable against the numerous stressful elements (blazing sunlight, UV exposure, and extreme hot and freezing temperatures) that windows, skylights and curtain walls experience over a lifetime.

About SageGlass 
SageGlass®, a product of Saint-Gobain, is advanced dynamic glass that can be electronically tinted or cleared to optimize daylight and improve the human experience in buildings. SageGlass manages the sunlight and heat that enter a building, significantly reducing energy consumption while improving people’s comfort and well-being. It can reduce a building’s cooling load by 20% and HVAC requirements up to 30%. It is a smarter, more elegant solution than conventional sun controls such as mechanical window shades, blinds and louvers. With SageGlass you can control sunlight and glare without shades or blinds while maintaining the view and connection to the outdoors. SageGlass is manufactured in Faribault, Minn., in the heart of “the Silicon Valley of the window industry,” and is a wholly owned subsidiary of Saint-Gobain of Paris, the world’s largest building materials company.

About Saint-Gobain in North America
Saint-Gobain has its North American headquarters in Valley Forge, Pennsylvania. As the world leader in sustainable habitat, Saint-Gobain is committed to inventing solutions to help professionals and communities around the world build and renovate comfortable, healthy, economical and energy-efficient buildings. The company has more than 250 locations in North America and approximately 15,000 employees. In the United States and Canada, Saint-Gobain reported sales of approximately $6.2 billion in 2014.

Recognized as a 2009 and 2010 ENERGY STAR Partner of the Year by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Saint-Gobain earned the 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014 and 2015 ENERGY STAR Sustained Excellence Award, the highest level of recognition for outstanding contributions to protecting the environment through energy efficiency. For more information about Saint-Gobain in North America, visit www.saint-gobain-northamerica.com and connect with the company on Facebook and Twitter.       

About Saint-Gobain
In 2015, Saint-Gobain is celebrating its 350th anniversary, 350 reasons to believe in the future. Backed by its experience and its capacity to continuously innovate, Saint-Gobain, the world leader in the habitat and construction market, designs, manufactures and distributes high-performance and building materials providing innovative solutions to the challenges of growth, energy efficiency and environmental protection. With 2014 sales of $54.6 billion, Saint-Gobain operates in 64 countries and has over 180,000 employees. For more information about Saint-Gobain, visit https://www.saint-gobain.com/en and the twitter account @saintgobain