Articulating defined spaces in retrofitting a 20-year-old residence through a punctuation of natural daylight, exterior spatial relationships and a reduction in use of finishes. Desert House is a modern, sustainable intervention in the desert. The single-family residence renovation represents a forward thinking approach to desert life. The one-acre site is within a single-family residential neighborhood, surrounded by textured desert mountains to the south, west, and northeast. The pure structure cuts a clean sharp edge through the revegetative desert landscape.
The newly added program focus in the renewed design is to perforate the original frame of the existing home to allow a vibrant, natural daylighting experience. A large overhang on the South façade screens the plane of glass from the harsh summer sun, while allowing winter light to wash the interior walls. The east elevation is shaded by mature vegetation, while the west face of the residence has limited, strategically placed openings protected with large overhangs. Views to the surrounding mountains and desert sky naturally radiate through the home. The additive program refines the circulation experience and relationships between uses for a spontaneous and organic residential experience.
A sixteen acre farm located on Salt Spring Island, an island in the Strait of Georgia between Vancouver Island and the mainland of British Columbia, the site of this house is bisected from east to west by a long row of mature Douglas fir trees. There is a gentle slope falling across the site from south to north. The south half of the property is an orchard containing a variety of fruit trees; the north half of the property is a hay field.
There was an existing cottage on the site which has been sold and relocated to a neighbouring property. The existing barn, garage and studio buildings remain. The new house, called Villa Klaathem by the owners, extends 276 feet in a straight line along the south side of the fir trees. The orchard has been made more regular with the addition of further fruit trees so that the clarity of the juxtaposition of cultural landscape to the south, and natural landscape to the north of the new house is reinforced.
The new house is subdivided by a breezeway into a principal dwelling and guest quarters. The exterior of the house is clad in charcoal-colored fibre-cement panels which render the house almost invisible when seen against the dark green foliage of the fir trees. Interiors are described by a luminous inner lining made of translucent acrylic panels. Over forty skylights bring sunlight into roof and wall assemblies during the day which causes this interior liner to glow softly; while at night, fluorescent lights mounted within the skylight openings turn the entire interior into a luminous field. Areas within this overall luminous surround are subdivided and defined by the insertion of reinforced concrete fireplace masses and wood cabinet-like service spaces. Glazing within window openings, the largest of which is 78 feet wide, is fully retractable, so that during the prolonged fair weather of Salt Spring Island the house can be transformed into an open-air pavilion.
Villa Klaathem, Salt Spring Island, Canada, by Patkau Architects
House in Utsunomiya is for parents and their son. They desired a commodious “doma” (dirt floor) and a flow line to their parents’s house neighbored on the south. The site faces the street northerly and is surrounded by four houses in other sides. Light was able to come through from the south side through small void between the other homes.
We arranged the doma at the center of the site and made it pass through the house. The three-storied doma with three large windows brings in natural light into the next four rooms; living room; dining room; master bedroom; and guest room. On the other hand, the doom is the penetrating void connected to the void of the south outside. So the floor of the doma is troweled with the charcoal mixed concrete as well as of outside, and the wall lightness level is brought closer to external wall. Some rooms are connected with the doma, and once the Japanese shoji (sliding paper screens) is opened, all rooms become one. The two stairs in the doma are made of light steel rods and laminated timbers, which prevent the relations between some rooms from disconnected.
The residence is located on a gently sloping site facing the sea and Tagomago Island, a Mediterranean landscape of pine and cedar trees. The proposed organization positions the living space at the core with independent small structures located around it. Given that the house is intended to be a vacation residence this allows for more flexible use, depending upon the number of occupants. The articulation of the house along a longitudinal axis provides ideally individual units independent from the core.
Tagomago House, by Carlos Ferrater
Combining ground breaking design, fantastic cuisine and stunning locations, The Cube by Electrolux is taking fine dining to a new level. Travelling across Belgium, Italy, Russia, Switzerland and Sweden, two spectacularly designed restaurants will be popping up at some of Europe’s most famous landmarks, inspiring guests with wonderful meals, events and once-in-a-lifetime views.
The Cube is fully transparent and consisting of glass encased in a white, laser-cut aluminium layer. Everything apart from the floor is pure white.
The interior is white Corian in combination with matt and glossily varnished wood. The wooden floor and carpet under the tables give it extra warmth and atmosphere, while the terrace outside provides an exclusive view across the Jubelpark, the centre of Brussels, the Atomium, etc.
The Cube is sited on top of the triumphal arch at a height of 45 metres. The entire structure has a surface area of 150 m2 and weighs 60 tonnes. The guests are taken to the top of the arch by lift.
Embracing the challenge of a relatively tight inner suburban location, and restrictive building envelope, the designers worked closely with the client to rationalise their “wish list” into a concise and deliverable brief. Little was lost in this process and even less in the translation to a finished home for the builder / client and their young family.
The house’s finely detailed bold rectilinear form is set back from the street amidst a carpet of natural ground cover. Entrance down the side of the house is made via a subtle path formed from old railway sleepers embedded into the ground. Whilst sitting comfortably in its street context proportionally, and with setbacks respectful of its neighboring properties, the view from the street confirms immediately that this house is quite different to those around it. The project is realized through a series of simple intersecting and overlapping rectangular forms. Each “box” represents a distinct portion of the overall program. A sleeping / study zone, a living zone, a garage / workshop, and cantilevered above all of this, a parents retreat, complete with its own living area and secluded outdoor terrace.
This 250 square meter dream home is designed by architect John Robert Nilsson near a lake in Sweden. It features truly amazing views of this lake as from terrace as from inside of the house. Simple shapes, clean lines are things that characterize its design. Very few materials were used in its construction. Limestone, silvery white ash, matte white painted walls and ceilings characterize the house from the inside. The exterior is done in brown with black puff, tar paper, steel and lots of dark colors. The contrast of the interior and the exterior is easily noticeable thanks to clean rooms with large glazed walls.
Villa Överby, Värmdö, Stockholm, by Designer, for John Robert Nilsson
The narrow site is sandwiched between very old neighboring buildings. Three thin slabs are projected into the open volume, softly dividing its functions. The continuous interior space is opening up to the street, to an intimate garden, and to the sky.
Townhouse, Landskrona Sweden, by Elding Oscarson
Richard Meier will once again begin welcoming visitors to his Long Island City model warehouse, a 3600-square feet and features works from spanning the Pritzker Prize winner’s 40-year career.
Most prominent in the museum are large scale presentation models and study models of the Getty Center in Los Angeles, an institution widely regarded as Mr. Meier’s most ambitious project and one that required fifteen years to complete. The collection also includes the first model for the Smith House in Connecticut, one of the early works that established Mr. Meier’s reputation, a series of un-built projects such as a 2002 design for the World Trade Center Memorial Square in New York, prototypes for furniture and product design as well as collages and sculptures composed of wax elements, architectural model pieces and stainless steel.
Tours of the gallery are by appointment only and last approximately 45 minutes. Appointments can be made through Richard Meier & Partners Architects: email@example.com. The model museum is closed to the public during the winter months due to the climate’s impact on the models.
Richard Meier Model Museum, Long Island City, Richard Meier & Partners Architects
The disused skeleton of a building attracted the attention of a person passionate about architecture. This person envisaged making his home out of it. A few quality parts were retained to create the volume of the property interior. A brick wall was found and this was extended from the road and formed the interior wall of the hall and the kitchen. The wall also extended outside and enclosed the garden. The living room is as high as the building itself and the office is laid out on an upper level between the metal trusses. The bedrooms are more contained and are located within a large, container-like area. They each open out onto the garden at the side and the light in the wash rooms comes from the two interior bay windows. Raw materials are given pride of place, new items have been used for the ceiling or are cemented and the concrete flooring has been polished and reflects the light.
Kelle, Belgium, by Atelier d’Architecture Bruno Erpicum & Partners