Lifestyles of Superheros: Fortress of Solitude

When it comes to awesome super hero home bases, there is really a tie between The BatCave and the Fortress of Solitude for most recognizable. Superman’s crystalline structure in the Arctic has been a base where he can escape and ignore the various problems that accompany being an alien crime fighter/print journalist.

Like most people, when people mention the “Fortress of Solitude”, I get the image from the original Superman film (With Gene Hackman as Luthor). However the Fortress showed up in the comics first and wasn’t just a crystal structure with a crystal powered projector. This space had an exercise room, sleeping quarters, an alien zoo and a lab. I’ll try to include a few different versions in pictures, if for no other reason then information, but I will actually write the design advice about the crystal structure we all know and love.

Found on

Found on

So how do you accomplish re-fitting your MAN LAIR into a serene Fortress where you can avoid the various problems in the world? Seeing as there are no crystals to simply toss and create it yourself, you’ll have to read what I write about (I know, it sucks) and spend quality time in a hardware store. This is one idea that can work in any room if you do it right.

1)White– TO give you the feel of the Arctic, you are going to have to adhere to the color pattern of snow and ice religiously. While this doesn’t give you the real “home-y” feel, it will give you a clean feeling. get everything in white. Couches, chairs, tables, appliances, electronics, sinks, cabinets. EVERYTHING.

2) Glass– While making everything out of ice would be ideal for this motif, and possibly cheaper, it will not be really comfortable, especially when you have to keep your home  below 32 degrees Fahrenheit and not touch anything without a few layers of insulation (That body heat thing can really ruin your ice sculpture dining room set.) Glass is the obvious answer. This can be either frosted glass or a clear glass plate. While the clear glass can be harder to keep clean, it will give you a “crystal” look while the frosted glass will give you a “snow” look.

3) Metal– While you do not see any metal in the movie pictures of the Fortress, there are reflective colors in the crystals that can be artificially created by adding stainless steel and polished aluminum or nickel to you own fortress. Avoid the yellow and brown metals. The blues that show up in the crystals can be replicated in some stainless products.

4) Lines– When you examine the film’s Fortress, there are no real soft spots. Every item has a hard, straight defined lines.  This means you have to avoid are and furniture with any curves. You do not want the fluffy white recliner, you instead want something similar to the Klippen Collection from IKEA. You don’t want a large wood table, you want to look at something similar to this Roca Collection Dining Table. You cannot get just any sink, get a square sink. My personal favorite for this look is the Kraus aquamarine frosted above-the-counter sink. Avoid curves at all costs here.

5) Lighting– This should be like everything else. Keep it white, stainless or glass with straight lines. If you are looking for a bathroom light, look at the Kitcher Lighting 6693NI3 bathroom bar light. Depending on the rooms you might also want to consider the Berkeley 5 light pendant if you want something similar to a Chandelier or the Nova 11675 floor lamp.

6) Art/ Mirrors– Even though Superman has a giant statue of his mother and father holding up the Krytonian globe, you want to keep art and sculptures to a minimum unless they adhere to the line and color rule. Look for either gray metals or glass, but always with straight lines. Consider the Venetian Dots Mirror from Pier 1 Imports or this brushed nickel sculpture available at Nova Lighting.

Found on

Found on


2 comments on “Lifestyles of Superheros: Fortress of Solitude

  1. […] Books and Figurines: I have discussed this before in my Art for Guys: Comic Books article, but this is another article and why be creative twice if I don’t have to be? Many […]

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