Warming Up In The Hot House
Jul 28, 2008
Craig Lord

The Water Cube is starting to get a little more crowded as teams arrive in the host Olympic city to test the waters ahead of racing from August 9.

With 11 days to go, the blue-toned Water Cube hosted swimmers from 10 nations, including squads from Japan, Belgium, Ireland, New Zealand, Libya and Romania. The venue's official name is The National Aquatics Centre but the Water Cube is what will stick: its translucent outside skin makes it look like a cube of bubbles or 'bubble wrap'. That coating is made of a Teflon-like material. Composed of two layers, it's separated by an interior passage that allows the building, which seats 17,000, to breathe like a greenhouse.

Perfect for some steamy performances, no doubt.