The house occupies a hill in Montauk with a distant view of ocean, a site that the owners, a couple with two young boys, spent years to find. It is the couple’s reprieve from their home in the city, to share the outdoor lifestyle with their family and to remember their teenage years together in Montauk. The house design prompts the owners to interact with the surrounding environment, evoking experiences of camping.
Necessity is the mother of invention, so they say – and this applies to architecture as much as any other endeavour. The designer and co-owner of this house, engineer Guy Shallard of Lat Forty Five, says necessity was precisely the reason he chose to elevate the living area and suspend it like a bridge several metres above the ground. “The long, narrow site is surrounded by other properties,” Shallard says. “And although the site is parallel to the lake, the living areas needed to be elevated to maximise the views and provide privacy.”
The building is developed along the southern and western boundaries of the parcel, which together with the elements of urbanization of the site, form a kind of atrium, whose diagonal flight to a distant vision of the Sierra Calderona. Access is accompanied by the south facade to find the point of intersection. At this point of view inside the distributor is located next to the stairs and the kitchen form the backbone of the operation of housing. The southern zone where the rooms are available during the day, dematerialized their presence due to the overhead light. In the west the rooms fall to a portion of parcel with a more domestic scale, while the master bedroom overlooking the lift light reflected on water.
Rather than a collection of rooms, we think of this house as a collection of constructions, and we produced a design that seems to be made out of various different structures. Paths covered by a glass roof weave between the disconnected structures to create an interior space that feels exterior, a private space that feels public, a hall that feels like an avenue. In that space the children can run around, you can enjoy a breeze while you eat, read under the sun, and fall asleep watching the stars.
House in Buzen, Buzen, Fukuoka, Japan, by Suppose Design Office
House in Minaminachi 3 is a residence for a couple with 2 children. It is standing at a place where an old shopping street and houses are still kept. The site area of the dwelling is only 55 sqm, and it has a square form. Also, houses at the area are sitting closely next each other, so the condition is quite difficult to make the residence open to outside keeping its private. The unique design of the house is a relationship between the building and its exterior elements. There are extra walls along the site, and they fully covered the dwelling that has only 29 sqm as building area. The house is standing with angle, not parallel to the exterior walls and site. Through the gap between the walls and the inside construction, sunlight is coming down well reflecting between the two structures.
House in Minamimachi 3, Hiroshima city, Japan, by Suppose Design Office
The potential of the various spaces unfolds in a sophisticated game of indoor and outdoor areas, which are directed to a spatial sequence. Different wings of the building to which certain features are intended, are woven together to create but also specific points of their own identity and mood. The mutual position of the wings of the building reacts to the different directions of view and sunlight and various outdoor spaces that are created in interaction with the living quarters.
The spatial configuration of the villa is also a response to temporal sequences of a family life, which allows commonality but also individuality in the different stages of life or daily routine. The courtyard structure with its various wings generate both open places of community but also quieter places of retreat and contemplation in which parallel various needs can be lived. The courtyard structure allows for capturing the sun in the living area during the whole course of days, without having to sacrifice views to the lake.
Villa, St. Niklausen, Switzerland, by Niklaus Graber & Christoph Steiger Architekten
Located in the Swiss Alpine village of Lumino, just north of Bellinzona, this house stands as a monolithic element, quietly complementing and echoing its context. The surrounding area is characterised by traditional stone built houses, many of which date back centuries and are marked by their use of this single construction material. The new house is intended as a relevant response to and contemporary interpretation of the vernacular; its exposed reinforced concrete form recalls the revered strength and resonates the presence of these old stone houses. Sitting on the edge of the old village, the house acts as a sort of bastion between the old core and the modern residential expansion.
“Make a step into the world of tea, slow down, enjoy, relax and focus on the moment. a place to celebrate my own tea ritual. From the beginning, research of calmness was linked to the aim of creating a space. a space where you have to slow down, feel protected and invisible. This is the reason why I designed a teahouse, a place for my own ritual of preparing and drinking tea. there is an important succession of actions: to select the tea, to prepare the teapot and to boil the water, to let the water cool down if necessary, to infuse the tea and to give it time to draw, to pour the tea into a bowl, enjoy it and to clean up afterwards.”
My Teahouse, Model scale 1:10 / Graduation Project, by Simon Kaempfer
Envisioned as a home that will accommodate a family as it grows, and play host to friends and extended family, the ideas that inform the design of the house were developed through an unusual process—The family, including their children, all actively participated in design meetings with the team from Dick Clark Architecture. Critical decisions were vetted among the group and decided by vote, with each family member getting equal say. The result is a house that stays true to its purpose as a place where family and friends can spend precious free time enjoying one another and the beauty of the Highland Lakes setting.
The most gestural element of the house is a raised, copper clad pavilion with transparent walls facing south toward the neighborhood and north toward the courtyard and lake. The butterfly shape of the roof dramatically casts off rainwater through an oversized scupper, an external reference to the series of seven water features found inside the walls of the retreat. The courtyard offers two points of entry: when the large wooden gate is rolled in to the open position below the pavilion, the house invites visitors to come in through this primary pathway. A second gate is found by following a linear water feature that starts along the east edge of the sandstone wall. Not visible from the street, this entry provides a more intimate arrival into the courtyard.
In the House 6 project, the idea of the veranda has been reinvented. The veranda is not exactly in front of the living room, disposed longitudinally, but, rather, perpendicular to it. The wooden pillars that give support to the structure and the clay tiles of traditional verandas have been substituted by modern pilotis that support a volume of flat slabs. The veranda of House 6, nonetheless, still remains an open space and, simultaneously, opens to the garden and the pool. It is a living room, a TV room and an extension of the internal kitchen.
This space, then, structured the entire architecture of the house, organized in two transversal volumes and an annex in the back that holds a home office. The lower volume houses the utilities, the kitchen and the living room with door-frames that can be recessed into the walls, and thereby entirely opening the internal space to either side. This sets the cross-ventilation and an unfettered contiguous view of the garden. The upper volume has the private area of the house with the bedrooms and, on the third floor there is a small multiple-use living room alongside an upper deck.
Architecturally, the space of the veranda, located under the bedrooms, would have a low ceiling-height, to create a warm feeling. The sum of the structure of the two perpendicular volumes and the living room ceiling-height would result in a very high ceiling. Thus, it was decided to make the living room lower in relation to the veranda and the garden. This result made it possible to have a house with elongated proportions and the viability of a covered external pleasant space to be used on both warm and cool days in the city of São Paulo.