Description by Neuman Hayner Architects:
The house was planned for a family of four. Two cubes separated by a passage combine into an “L” shaped house. The front cube, of double height space, holds the public areas: entrance, living room, kitchen, dining room (all on the ground floor) and a study on the first floor. The passage, 4 meters wide, continues the patio, which is the center of the house, and separates the public wing and the private wing. The rear cube, (the private wing) has 3 floors: The ground floor holds a living room, two children rooms, a laundry room and a guests w.c. The 1st floor holds the master bedroom, and a bridge passage to the library (on the front cube). The basement is well lightened and ventilated by a large patio, and holds a guest’s room, a safe room, and a storage room.
The bridge “casts a shadow” on the ground floor, enhanced by a 120 cm wide concrete strip. The kitchen island aligns accordingly. The bridge is composed of white pine wood, and continues as a strip into the master bedroom and the adjacent open bathroom, with concrete flooring on both sides. The tree barks cover the front yard, are also used in the passage and enhance the concrete strip. The swimming pool is covered by marblite and flows into a waterfall towards the bamboo trees. Dry bamboo is used as railings and outdoor walls. The house includes many hanged objects, like swings, as well as outdoor sittings and a bed in the children rooms.
Design Office: Neuman Hayner Architects
Location: Tel Aviv, Israel
Photographs: Amit Gosher
Description by Setless Architecture:
Sited above the intersection of Tew’s Falls and Webster’s falls on the Bruce Trail, this house makes a strong connection to a singular landscape. The Bruce Trail follows the edge of the Niagara escapment – a UNESCO World Biosphere Reserve – from the Niagara River, almost 900 km to Tobermory at the tip of the Bruce Peninsula. On its way, the Trail passes through a mix of provincial land, Municipal and provincial conservation authorities and private land owners.
Our site contains a 250 foot stretch of privately owned path that connects the two heavily used city parks. The key vista into the bowl shaped Spencer Gorge occurs right in front of the main exterior courtyard. As such, the project that looks idyllic in a secluded setting gets activated on weekends by thousands of hikers and city dwellers that climb the 200 ft cliff to experience this expansive view.
The build had to comply with the most restricted land use in Ontario. The process began with a derelict house within both Municipal Hamilton Conservation Authority and Provincial Niagara Escarpment Commission protected zones. Our experience working in tight urban settings helped us work inside the regulations, eventually carving out a small building site on this expansive 1.5 acre lot.
The main public rooms in the house open to the front to take advantage of the view, and the rolling seasonal mist. The rear of the house is a landscape unto itself. The tall, slender, Carolinian Forest provides a high canopy for the bustling forest bed. The bedrooms and patios were designed to enjoy this concealed natural space. The house takes advantage of the leafy canopy to provide shade in the summer. In the winter, as the leaves fall, the high R-value glass lets the daylight flood in.
The light filled spaces are at odds with the owners’ impressive art collection. Artifacts collected over long sojourns through the Zagros mountain range, India and Myanmar nestle next to modern Canadian art and bookend the exterior views.
Looking back at the house from the Bruce, the program of residence blurs with gallery and public building. We are proud to provide this urban elevation to this important thoroughfare.
Design Office: Setless Architecture
Photographs: Sandy Rush
Design Office: Katerina Valsamaki Architects
Location: Zakynthos, Greece
Photographs: Konstantinos Thomopoulos
Design Office: Atelier Kastelic Buffey
Location: Toronto, Canada
Photographs: James Brittain
Design Office: Studio Guilherme Torres
Location: São Paulo, Brazil
Description by Architekten Wannenmacher + Möller GMBH:
The Möllmann residence is located in a long-standing residential area, mainly comprising detached houses, outside Bielefeld. It was not possible to realise the requested flat roofed house because of the land use stipulations that required a symmetrical roof with an angle of 30 – 38°. Therefore the decision was made to use the traditional regional architecture as a point of orientation for the exterior of the house. The barns that are popular for agricultural use in this rural region were chosen as a particular reference for the formal design of the house. In line with the simple, unpretentious architecture of the barns the residence was designed as a lengthened, rectangular structure with a double-pitched roof without overhang. The masonry facades on three sides in quarry stone also refer to the traditional architecture in rural regions.
Although the house includes formal references to regional traditions the character of its interior is still consistently modern. This is made particularly clear in the open layouts that allow the rooms to flow into one another. The complete glazing of the side of the building shell that faces the garden, which allows the inside to melt into the outside through its lack of materials, is also a typical characteristic of a modern space concept. Numerous built in storage elements, benches and storage rooms provide sufficient storage inside the house. The books are also gathered in one place in a specially fitted library on the ground floor of the house. This meant that all the utility areas in the building could be kept free of objects for everyday use. The walls remain clear and can thus develop their spatial effects without disturbances.
Reduction to only a few materials and colours – Italian sandstone for the floor, white plaster for walls and ceilings, oiled oak for the benches and glass and grey aluminium for the windows – gives the rooms a soothing calmness. With the support of a minimum of furnishings the architecture develops an ascetic austerity that makes the house a place of contemplative peace and allows the residents to escape from the hectic and noise of everyday life.
Design Office: Architekten Wannenmacher + Möller GMBH
Description by Daffonchio & Associates Architects:
The house is set on a secluded, tranquil stand surrounded by established trees. The main house consists of 2 wings: the living wing and the bedroom wing. Both wings have long, low roofs which appear to float over and past them. These roofs are supported on external steel posts, as all of the walls stop short of the ceiling, with clerestory windows on top of all internal and external walls. The clerestory windows allow views of the trees from inside the house, and admit a soft, diffused light into the house during the day. At night, the ceilings are lit up by lights which are concealed below the clerestory windows. This creates a soft, ambient light, and enhances the floating effect of the roofs. The deep overhangs of the roofs and the generous concrete aprons around the house extend the house into the garden both spatially and visually. The deep roof overhangs also shade the glass in summer, protecting the house from solar heat gain.
Along the full length of the northern side of the living area is a 16 meter long floor to ceiling motorized frameless glass sliding door. When opened, the door disappears into cavity walls, and the living area effectively becomes an open covered patio, with 2 large cavity sliders on the south side opening onto a secluded courtyard.
The entrance door was designed by South African artist Marcus Neustetter. It comprises a sheet of laser cut steel on the outside and laser cut walnut on the inside, with clear glass in between to let light shine in during the day and out at night. The laser cut image originates from a Google Earth image showing the topography of Johannesburg and the surrounding areas.
The minimalist architecture, expansive spaces, soft natural daylight and white walls in the house serve as a backdrop for other artwork throughout the house.
The eco-pool has been designed to read as part of the garden, with gravel banks acting as the transition between the garden and the pool, and planted wetlands blending visually with the surrounding landscaping.
Design Office: Daffonchio & Associates Architects
Location: Hyde Park, Johannesburg, South Africa
Description by Holst Architecture:
Karuna House is an ambitious sustainable design project that was designed to meet a combination of the world’s most demanding green building certifications. The project is the first MINERGIE-certified home in North America, earning the top rating of MINERGIE-P-ECO. Additionally, it has achieved Passive House PHIUS+, is pending LEED for Homes Platinum, and has reached Net Zero energy use by incorporating onsite solar panels. It is expected to be one of the few homes in the world certified by both MINERGIE and Passive House Institute US.
While achieving the environmental sustainability requirements of the project, the home successfully maintains a rigorous form that responds to the client’s programmatic needs. Located on the southern slope of a mountain overlooking the Willamette Valley’s rich wine region, the Karuna House provides spectacular views of the hills and the town of Newberg, Oregon, below. Two towers anchor the Karuna House to the earth, marking the location of double-height spaces and vertical circulation.
Wood and glass volumes appear to alternately cling to and slide past the towers. These elements contain the living spaces, and are arranged to maximize views to the south and east while graciously separating social spaces from the private and guest spaces. Sited in an area famous for its rust-colored soil, the home’s exterior palette is composed of materials and colors that reflect the tones of its surroundings. The interior finishes cast a warm minimalism saturated in natural light, allowing the owner’s eclectic art collection to take center stage.
The super-insulated envelope is designed to be airtight. Solar heat gain is controlled through the use of exterior operable blinds that shade triple-glazed wood windows. Heating, cooling, and hot water are supplied by an efficient heat pump system, and a heat recovery ventilator provides the spaces with a continuous supply of fresh, preheated air. The home’s tight building enclosure is expected to result in the usage of 90% less heating and cooling energy than a typical home.
Karuna House’s client, a leading proponent of smart climate policy and sound land use, is pursuing the project as a case study to shed light on the ways that the leading green building certifications and standards complement and/or conflict with one another
Design Office: Holst Architecture
Location: Oregon, Usa
Design Office: Arquitetura Nacional
Photographs: Marcelo Donadussi
Design Office: Alexandra Fedorova
Location: Moscow, Russia
Photographs: Sergey Ananiev
Design Office: Amsterdam Living
Design Office: Dust
Location: Arizona, Usa
Photographs: Jeff Goldberg & Bill Timmerman
Design Office: Chris Deam Architects
Location: California, Usa
Photographs: Dustin Aksland
Design Office: Bianco + Gotti Architetti
Location: Bergamo, Italy
Photographs: Luca Santiago Mora
Design Office: Wespi de Meuron
Location: Ranzo, Switzerland
Photographs: Hannes Henz
Design Office: CR2 Arquitetura
Location: Sao Paulo, Brazil
Photographs: Rafaela Netto
Design Office: WernerField & Joshua Rice Design
Location: Texas, Usa
Photographs: Robert Yu
Design Office: Pascali Semerdjian
Location: Sao Paulo, Brazil
Photographs: Leonardo Finotti