Reflecting the geography of its surroundings - the sky, the harbor and the city of Reykjavik - Harpa Concert Hall and Conference Center opened in May 2011 and is home to the Iceland Symphony Orchestra and the Icelandic Opera. Built in collaboration with renowned visual artist Olafur Eliasson, Harpa has a glass facade made up of cubes that change color with the light of day.
Harpa boasts four halls, 1,800-seat auditorium, ample meeting space, catering services, boutiques, Kolabrautin restaurant for fine dining and a ground floor bistro. There are regular guided tours given every day. In April 2013 Harpa was awarded the European Union prize for contemporary architecture, presented by the Mies van der Rohe Foundation and the European Commission.
Construction started in 2007 but was halted with the start of the 2008 Icelandic financial crisis. The completion of the structure was uncertain until the government decided in 2008 to fully fund the rest of the construction costs for the half-built concert hall.
The building is the first purpose-built concert hall in Reykjavík and it was developed in consultation with artistic advisor Vladimir Ashkenazy and international consultant Jasper Parrott of HarrisonParrott. It houses the Iceland Symphony Orchestra and the offices of The Icelandic Opera.