Cups Nine | NORMLESS Architecture Studio

“Cups Nine”, a Cafe and Patisserie, located in Trikala, Greece.

It was designed by NORMLESS Architecture Studio.

 

Descritpion by NORMLESS Architecture Studio:

A new Cups Nine opened its doors, this time as a Cafe & Patisserie store. Right in the heart of the school district and opposite of one of the most popular city’s squares, the Old Despotiko, the new Cups Nine comes to shake up the city for one more time and reintroduce the street coffee shops. The owners envisioned a new space that can serve their best seller coffee as well as their new products adopting them to the needs of the modern life.

The architects translated this vision into a space where the boundaries between the interior and the exterior space are blurred. The seating area, the serving bar are all flexible and accessible either from the inside or the outside. It becomes unclear where the store ends and the street begin. This was mainly achieved through the surrounding window frames, which were all custom and handmade metal work. The windows open and the bar area doubles inside the arcade. A similar thing happens on the street side where the wooden tables slide and move on the other side so that you can enjoy your beverage overlooking the city. Inside the long and narrow space, the store is divided into the serving and seating area by a long wooden bar, which is interrupted by a metal light box that is the cashier point. All woodwork is again custom made by a local carpenter.  As soon as you open the door you immediately take notice of the impressive flooring, which is a successful blend of laminate and hexagon black tiles that run through the store and continue on the wooden bars. The interior and exterior walls, as well as the ceiling are all covered with Kourasanit, a natural coating.

The remarkable mural paintings of Asteris Dimitriou, decorate the walls and has become one of the shop’s trademarks.

The new Cups Nine store came to change with its unique space and products, yet again, the urban landscape of the city of Trikala. ­


Design Office: NORMLESS Architecture Studio
Location
: Trikala, Greece
Area: 52,00 m2
Project Year: 2016
Photographs: Kostas Spathis


Nadja Apartment | Point Supreme

The renovated Nadja Apartment is located in Athens, Greece

It was designed by Point Supreme.

Description by Point Supreme:

Nadja consists of two apartments on subsequent floors that were renovated and connected with a stair in the middle.

The two levels were materialized as opposite spatial experiences. The lower level is a continuous, marine-like environment with big pieces of furniture anchoring the family’s communal activities like floating islands. Instead of the typical division of rooms for kitchen, dining, living and playing, spaces in Nadja are flexible and look towards each other. They are furnished with custom made constructions that serve as viewing devices; the cupboards, seats, stair, shelves and tables are mixed with different typologies of screens, interior partitions, curtains and other visual filters that physically delineate while visually connecting.

The most central element is a complex construction featuring the stair, living room and kitchen cupboards, a glass display partition, a built-in plant pot, a blackboard and a pink sun rising towards upstairs. It is a miniature piece of architecture in itself providing a focal point within the large open plan.The upper level hosts a dense living environment with a more earthly atmosphere. The bedrooms are designed as combinations of two complementary types of spaces, a more social area and a more intimate, private zone. This floor is rich in graphic treatment that complements the architecture, for example in the design of doors and bathrooms, at times inspired by Greek island architecture.The clients followed closely the design process. They continuously supported and further challenged the architecture, therefore achieving an extremely rich and satisfying result. The project was built in collaboration with KN Group constructions.


Design Office: Point Supreme
Architects:  Konstantinos Pantazis, Marianna Rentzou, Leonardos Katsaros, Lefteris Dousis
Location: Athens, Greece
Area: 270.0 m2
Year: 2014
Pm & Construction: KN Group, Konstantinos Stratantonakis

Photographs: Yannis Drakoulidis & Point Supreme


Summerhouse in Santorini | Kapsimalis Architects

 

Design Office: Kapsimalis Architects

Location: Santorini, Greece

Photographs: Julia Klimi

Kathikia | Ioannis Exarchou

Design Office: Ioannis Exarchou

Location: Kea Island, Greece

Photographs: Sylvia Diamantopoulos

Residence in Mykonos | Deborah French Designs

Design Office: Deborah French Designs

Location: Mykonos, Greece

Photographs: Paul Ryan

Residence In Syros, Greece | Block722

Description by Block722:

Situated in the island of Syros, this summer house hosts a family of four and their guests. In contrast to the neighbouring Syros I residence, the steep and intense topography dominated the design process.

 A massive staircase leads to a gradual descent from the top towards the house, intensifying the experience of the cycladic landscape. The entrance is surrounded by the higher volumes of the main areas of the house, ending the descent path, then opening immediately to an ample view of the Aegean.

 Programmaticaly, the house is clearly divided into the clean and square volume of the common areas (living room, kitchen) and the partially buried rectangular volume of the bedrooms. The guesthouse is also buried inside the slope, defined by a stone wall that is typical of the local archihtecture. The main volume is characterized by a free floor plan, allowing the continuous view of the outside and offering a cosy living space near the fireplace. The outdoor common spaces include two open “courtyards” shielded from the sun and the central part of the court, open to sunbathing and the children’s plays.

Design Office: Block722

Location: Syros, Grrece

Photographs: Erieta Attali, Ioanna Roufopoulou

Summer House in Antiparos | Katerina Tsigarida Architects

Description by Katerina Tsigarida Architects:

PNG I and II  have been inspired by Antiparos landscape, which has been designed, for ages, by “pezoules” (short stone walls). They are located in the east part of the island, facing the island of Paros, and looking straight ahead to the Aegean Sea.
They have been conceived as buildings which naturally emerge through the archetypical cycladic landscape. Stone walls which follow the natural curves of the landscape, organize the interior and exterior life of the summer house. Open and closed spaces are described as a combination of platforms “platomata” scattered along narrow streets, footpaths, designed by “pezoules”. Walking along these footpaths, everyday, is divided into all the expanses of life in summer; from public space to privacy, from sun to shadow, from wind to silence.
The houses adopt the characteristics of a concave and a convex wall, that opens itself to the view, following the terrain.

Design Office: Katerina Tsigarida Architects

Location: Panagia, Antiparos, Greece

 

Summer house in Paros, Greece | Alexandros Logodotis

Description by Alexandros Logodotis:

Daylight reveals the plasticity of tumor and white colors as watercolors have spread in selected areas, while at night the lights in headlights and other details throughout the building becomes a supernatural setting, hovering over the pool. The orientation is East and spaces organized in turn by the sun to “live” the best of their era: the outdoor kitchen has shade in the afternoon to be able to enjoy a meal in peace. The building appears to volume configured by touch, without straights and tight corners – as if it was slowly over time, with the wind and rain. The smooth curves and holes, the white Cycladic which eliminates the strong light and color harmonies, is what characterizes the area “breathe” the breeze coming through the openings. The center of gravity of the house seems to be the staircase stands like a sculpture. Patiti, gray concrete into alternating with marble tiling and signage in the area around the pool, sand-colored, covered the floors. The house and minimal ergonomic, ideal for anyone who went immediately into the atmosphere, which is something ethereal and water together. Accountable designed built shelves in the living room, a dining room buffet abstract and built beds, without spikes. The minimum-which has nothing but the usual rigor than tenderness and eroticism, is what fits the temperament of their owners and possibly only “ties” with such an advantageous position, as the Cyclades.

 

Design Office: Alexandros Logodotis

Location: Paros Island, Cyclades, Greece

 

House in Kea, Greece | Marina Stassinopoulos – Konstantios Daskalakis

Description:

The characteristic features of the site and the island’s traditional building practices, though without a historicist attitude, are the recognizable project elements: the maintenance of the existing flora, the restructuring of the site’s terracing and the organization of the house with volumes which are either independent or ‘arise’ as intermediate gaps. The building is placed on a terrace. The entrance to the house is found in the void between the volume of the house and the terrace behind it. A longitudinal course, parallel with the gradient of the slope connects the distinct building volumes and three courtyards, each having different characteristics: a covered courtyard (in the heart of the building), a shaded one by the oak trees (close to the living room) and one exposed to the sun (at the end of the corridor). Perpendicular to the longitudinal course one enters the main areas of the building (the living room and the two bedrooms), which open up towards the sea. The circulation and the service spaces (entrance, corridors and bathrooms) are expressed as voids that connect the differing volumes of the primary spaces. The configuration of the flat roof corresponds to the plan of the house, as it depicts the individual volumes and the relationship between them. It is also the main facade of the building since it is exposed in its entirety as one approaches. The roof is formed so as to provide cross ventilation to the main living and sleeping areas and is also set up as a system of collectors that receive and direct the rainwater to the cistern which is the quiet protagonist of the building. The house is constructed with the usual practices of the local builders. Without a decorative intent most surfaces (floors, external walls, internal wet areas) are formed by cement.

Design Office: Marina Stassinopoulos – Konstantios Daskalakis

Location: Kea Island, Cyclades, Greece

Photographs: Yiorgis Yerolympos

Maison Kamari | Re-act Architects

Design Office: Re-act Architects

Location: Paros, Greece

Photographs: Damien de Medeiros

MYTHIES | hhharchitects

Description by hhharchitects:

In the area of Stoupa in Mani hhharchitects planned and constructed three vacation houses with a shared pool for an exclusively touristic operation. The complex consists out of stone blocks placed in between the existing olive trees, promoting the elements of the local traditional architecture but in a constant dialog with contemporary architectural design. The building materials, as also the morphology and the breakdown of the houses in a smaller scale, refers and paraphrases a typical Mani settlement. The main volumes are connected through transparent glass elements creating contrast and tension to the massive stone blocks. Open courtyards and verandas with pergolas are created between the different volumes with space qualities equal to the interior.
The three houses are placed in a row with the two larger positioned at the edges and a smaller one in between, keeping always the privacy of each one. Each of the bigger house consists of two stone blocks, one with three floors (incl. the basement) which includes all the bedrooms, and one with only ground level which is the main living area. The entrance and dining area is the connection space that with its transparency floats to the surrounding open spaces. All pergolas, railings, an outdoor staircase and a small veranda are made of light steel constructions, where the use of perforated metal plates for the floor and for the steps makes these elements appear lighter and increases the contrast to the stone walls. From the same metal plates are also made the window shutters creating an interesting play with the light.

Design Office: hhharchitects

Location: Mani, Greece

Photographs: Nikos Daniilidis

House in Zakynthos, Greece | Katerina Valsamaki Architects

 

Design Office: Katerina Valsamaki Architects

Location: Zakynthos, Greece

Photographs: Konstantinos Thomopoulos

Traditional Stone House | Philippitzis & Associates

Description by Philippitzis & Associates:

Claims of functionalism, geometrical clarity and simplicity advise the final form, while the organisation of spaces predisposes for a way of life “simple and necessary”, that longs for the contact with the natural environment.

The load bearing concrete structure, of which the construction from pillars on a level with the ground and above, took place by building the stonemasonry, like a “kernel”. This presupposes an in detail design and particular supervision on the electromechanical networks in the stage of manufacture.

Demolition stones, “Syki’s” Pelion stones with river shingles weave the web of stonemasonry which are joint-filled with a special plaster (kourasanit) with the addition of 5 mm tessera.

In the main volume of the building that is totally stone, is organised the space of entry with the living room and the kitchen with the space of food in the depth, as well as a guesthouse. Exempted from internal partitions, in the space of the living room dominates a sense of uplifting under the obvious roof with stone triple gripida. The internal wooden staircase manufactured from trainwood placed in the exterior stone wall leads to the open attic, where is found the bedroom with the bath.

In the smaller volume the little house there is a guesthouse and a laboratory, bath and the essential auxiliary spaces. The roofs were manufactured by local and “Agioritiki” chestnut tree with double insulation and covering with Pelion plates.

Design Office: Philippitzis & Associates

Location: Milies, Pelion, Greece

House in Aegina Island, Greece | Sfakianaki Nelli

Design Office: Sfakianaki Nelli

Location: Aegina Island, Greece

Photographs: Studio Kontos

Apartment in Thessaloniki, Greece | Nimand Architects

Design Office: Nimand Architects

Location: Thessaloniki, Greece

 

Tainaron Blue Retreat | Kostas Zouvelos, Kassiani Theodorakakou

Description by Kostas Zouvelos:

The towers, these imposing tall and narrow prisms, are the most stubborn and absolute expression of Mani building. On the outskirts of the settlements, the “xemonia” were erected in order to defend or expand the land property. They served to control, exclude or drive out the opponents, but also to transfer the pressure from the main settlement to new territories.

Tainaron Blue Retreat is a representative sample of traditional xemonia of the South. The tower – now transformed into a small guest house – is facing a similar construction, which had also been a strong fortified complex. Both together, they controlled the road to the area around Tainaron. The war tower is built on solid ground and rocks known as “rizomies”, at a strategic spot that offers an amazing view of the sea and the hinterland.

The restoration of the traditional building solved form issues in relation to the old texture of the masonry, so that the final look of the tower gives the impression of a building that emerges from the rock, upon which it is founded. The grouting internally and externally was done with real “kourasani” or Roman mortar (a combination of Theraic soil, ceramic powder, lime and a special shade of river sand) and minimum amount of cement, which enhances the static adequacy of the masonry and ensures durability.

The conversion of the tower into a guest house had to overcome considerable difficulties. The reason was the need for a high degree of adaptation to the specific characteristics of the regional architecture and at the same time the demand for accommodation in rooms with modern aesthetic perception. The four floors, with their relatively limited interior spaces that comprise of three bedrooms with bathroom and shared kitchen, breakfast and reception space, are organized along a vertical axis, allowing guests to have the unique experience of moving through narrow openings (“waterfalls”), wooden stairs or rocks protruding from the walls and arches (“steps”).

As the formation of the exterior spaces had to ensure minimum interference, the addition of a water surface area adapted to the specific environment and respected the topography of the landscape, resulting in an even and unified set of buildings and space with intensity and character.

Tainaron Blue Hotel has been awarded the Special Committee Award for Overall Rating, at the 100% Hotel Design Awards 2015.

Design Office: Kostas Zouvelos, Kassiani Theodorakakou

Location: Asiata, Sminos, Greece

Photographs: George Meitner

Villa Melana | Valia Foufa & Panagiotis Papassotiriou

Description by Valia Foufa & Panagiotis Papassotiriou:

The project was awarded to us by a family leaving in Athens keen on a new country house in the Arcadian Landscape. Design started mid-2012 and work on site was completed at the end of 2014.

The program

It all started as a simple snapshot; At a very steep site with clear view towards the sea a holiday retreat protects its inhabitants from the sun heat and the strong winds while soothing the senses under the moonlight.

We have placed the building at the only available naturally formed plateau of the site in order to avoid unnecessary groundworks that could spoil the relief.

Simple elements to deal with a difficult and very unstable and steep terrain. The endless of the sea view and the enormity of the open horizon is overwhelming and therefore no great attempt is needed to frame the views.

The structure is defined by 3 volumes that are placed along the contour lines. The end product is a result of the division of a rectangular volume into 3 parts while staggering the middle part towards the east.This break is enhanced by the use of various materials and alteration of the design.

The main features of the central volume (where the day activities are hosted) are the cladding with local Arcadian stone – dry stone construction both internally and externally on concrete frame and brick infill -, pitched gabled roof with roofslates and the fireplace on the narrow end framing the view. The design has references to the local architecture (where the Tsakonian “Makrinaria” are met) incorporating changes to the form and size of the openings in order to achieve better results on the bioclimatic output and view.

Floor to ceiling openings enhance the dual aspect feature without affecting the monolithic quality while the views cross on all sides. The staggering of the western wall from the outline of this volume creates a long and narrow circulation area under a flat parapet roof that connects all three volumes.

Two white blocks are set back on either side of the main volume (where the bedrooms and wc’s are hosted) acting as reference to the minimalism and sincerity of our attempted architectural language away from heavy decorative features and overstatements.

At the intersection of the three volumes two fair faced concrete beams act as “connectors” subtly underlining the junction of the 3 blocks.

Finally, white render reflects the sun, the stone cladding offers its thermal mass connecting the building with the surroundings and together protect the inhabitants from the weather conditions. A configuration revealing the endless view to the horizon and was born out of consideration for the steep relief and the local traditional materials.

Design Office: Valia Foufa & Panagiotis Papassotiriou

Location: Pera Melana, Greece

Photographs: Erieta Attali & Pygmalion Karatzas

Bar- Restaurant “Alemagou” | k-studio

Description by k-studio:

Alemagou is a bar and restaurant on the sands of Ftelia Beach, in Mykonos.

The concept is holistic, with every element of the project telling a common story and coming together to create an inspirational yet laid-back atmosphere, perfectly suited to the site.The menu revisits traditional, well-loved Greek recipes to produce simple but intriguing new dishes.

The cocktails and the music selection also offer new combinations of favourite ingredients. The architectural design is an extension of the same approach, creating an exciting reinterpretation of tried and tested, traditional building techniques.

Taking inspiration from typical Cycladic architectural elements such as whitewashed, smooth-edged houses; dry-stone walls that blend into the scrubby landscape; practical, hardwearing screed floors; and natural reed-thatched roof insulation, the familiar textures are applied to contemporary, organic forms to create a unique character.

Added to the palate are the dominating natural conditions of the site: the strong winds that make this beach a surfer’s paradise; the burning 40-degree midday sun and the harsh, dry, rocks of the encroaching landscape. Rather than attempting to block the effects of these natural forces, the design welcomes them, embracing their qualities and turning them to its advantage.

Natural reed thatch is used to create a 60cm deep, inverted field for a canopy that sways soothingly in the dissipated wind, allowing air to circulate and the space to stay cool. Throughout the day dappled sunlight filters through the reeds, lighting and shading the space simultaneously. At night down lighting continues to animate the canopy from within, creating a warm, intimate atmosphere for evening dining.

Beneath the canopy an un-interrupted topography of cool screed terraces flows gradually down from the restaurant to the sand, via the bar and lounging areas. Circulation is organized to create specifically designated areas for dining, drinking or relaxing yet their softly blurred, low-level boundaries let light and air flow naturally through the open space and allow continuous views across the beach to the sea and sunset.

The combination of these purposely designed and naturally occurring elements creates a multi-sensory architecture that sits in harmony with the environment, provides a natural, comfortable refuge from the elements and creates an exciting, sociable atmosphere.

Design Office: k-studio   

Location: Mykonos, Greece

Photographs: Yiorgos Kordakis

Notre Ntam’ | Z-level

Description by Z-level:

This project is located on the point of Agios Fokas on the south-westernside of the island of Lesvos on an agriculturalgreenfield site amongst the olive groves. The only structures of the area are small agricultural buildings – ntam”. Topographically, the 3.5hectare seaside plot is on an incline and planted with 300 olive trees. The owners, two brothers and their families, are city dwellers, used to living in Athens and Boston, decided to forge new bonds with the land of their ancestors.
The basic issues of the design were incorporating the residences in the topography of the landscape; low-impact accessibility; developing a dialectic between the two buildings; making use of the unconfined view; incorporating bioclimatic elements; and using natural materials. The design was intended to re-interpret local vernacular references, which are not drawn from traditional residential architecture on Lesvos, but from early industrial buildings located there. The dominant theme was how to handle an exceptional site with favourable conditions in difficult times.
The residences were situated with an eye to incorporating them in the hillside, placing them below the level of the skyline, in the olive grove, leaving the landscape that surrounds them intact. Of the 3.5 hectares that comprise the plot, 600 sq.m. were covered by hard materials, while the remaining land was left covered by earth, and the old olive grove terraces were recorded and repaired.

The residences were placed parallel to the elevation contour lines, between the end of the olive grove and the start of the seaside terrain, functioning as a passage from the land to the sea. This zone allows a flow of the landscape and marks the boundary between a solid and a light side: the elevation facing the olive grove is stone, with openings that isolate segments of the landscape, while the elevation facing the sea in transparent and unified.
The building appears to rise from the ground in which it is rooted on the side of the olive grove and to levitate on the side of the sea. As you approach the building and walk through it, its spaces unfold like a movie, and the sea appears gradually, framed initially by openings of the stone elevation; then through shady arcades and deep verandas, that protect from the sun; and, finally, the view opens up on the platform above the cliff.
The two buildings are connected at the level of the roofs, which constitute a conceptual continuity, following the shape of the hill on a lower level.
Both buildings were designed using the same design principles and comprise variations on a theme, being respectively 150sq.m. and 250sq.m. builds.
The houses are on the ground level and shaped as elongated rectangles, designed on the bioclimatic principles of using openings on either side, ventilation and shading. The multi-level inclined roof creates a single room space at its highest point, with an open balcony that faces the interior of the residence. This final level has glass sides with opening segments which help remove the warm air by drawing it away.
Maintaining the interior and exterior spaces at the same level fosters a sense of cohesion and flow, while also allowing access for the handicapped, who have access to all areas. The pool was created to be enjoyed by those who have difficulty getting down to the sea.
The outdoor areas are designed to be autonomous from the interior, to suit the requirements of the owners and their visitors, with an outdoor kitchen, a vegetable garden, as well as seating, eating and bathroom areas, as well as the facilities for outdoor film showings.
The weight-bearing structure is metal and the filling materials stone and light wall-building with external insulation façade. Local materials were used, including Polychnitos stone and natural earths to colour the cement on the roof and the roads. Sustainable heating systems were used.

Design Office: Z-level

Location: Agios Fokas, Greece

Photographs: Yiorgis Yerolybos

Lycabettus Penthouse | esé studio

Design Office: esé studio

Location: Athens, Greece

Photographs: Ioanna Roufopoulou