The new chapel of the Roman Catholic chaplaincy of the University of Edinburgh is beautiful. It has already won a number of architectural prizes and I would not be surprised if it wins more. As well as being a chapel for the University RC chaplaincy, this space also serves as the chapel for the Dominican community that serves it. It has a rather surprising location in a back garden in a very busy corner of the city, but the architect has made the most of its location and the space does not feel at all constrained. Indeed, the glass wall behind the altar opens the space out to the natural world.
The materials used are allowed to speak for themselves - the wood and stone have a gentle warmth - and the overall design combines clear simplicity and a clever interplay of curved and straight lines. This is partly dictated by the location - the curved, top-lit left wall runs along the boundary wall of the next door garden and the right wall has windows set obliquely to give light from and glimpses to the chaplaincy's garden.
It is always wonderful to find a place of stillness and peace in a busy city and this is one of the loveliest I have yet found in Edinburgh.