By Magaly • May 26, 2020
Soori Bali by SCDA Architects:
“Soori Bali lies within the Tabanan Regency, one of Bali’s most fertile and picturesque regions. Here, the landscape ranges from volcanic mountains and verdant rice terraces to beautiful black-sand beaches overlooking the Indian Ocean. The location provides for a complete hideaway and offers numerous quality views of the surrounding beach, ocean, mountains and rice fields.
Soori Bali was designed with the overt principle of green sustainable initiatives in mind. The project is conceived to be both climatically and socially reactive to its locale. The design responds to the notions of climate and place, and endeavors to engage the local landscape and community. The design of the resort was approached with a sensitivity to the nuances of the site setting, and thus executed with the strategy of minimal environmental impact, minimal built footprint and with local cultural practices (religious and ceremonial processions) taken into consideration.
With an understanding that the beach is an important socio-economical aspect of the site, deliberate efforts were taken to consult and incorporate the customs and contributions of the local community within the conceptual design process. The construction methods adopted also creates training and jobs for the neighbouring villages. About 50% of the workers currently on site are recruited from the surrounding community.
The resort reflects on its privileged location by adopting the predominant use of locally sourced materials, together with a careful integration of indigenous motifs, forms and elements. The result, a harmonious balance between the clean, contemporary lines of the architecture and the soothing tones and textures of the internal and external finishes and finishing.
The design of the restaurant terrace and spa facilities incorporates terracotta screens; adapted and stylized from traditional Balinese motifs. These screens generate a marked visual contrast when combined with the dark terrazzo floors and feature walls clad in dark grey volcanic lava stones, such as Batu Candi and Batu Karangasem.
The villas are characterized by the interplay of materials which flow from the interior to exterior spaces. Smooth terrazzo walls and floors are combined with hand brushed natural timber screens, soft silk upholstery and custom designed dark stained timber furniture to form a serene internal space. The use of timber flows into the external spaces, where timber screens wrap a private bale overlooking a private plunge pool lined with Sukabumi stone. Paras Kelating, a light grey volcanic stone is applied to feature walls along the pool edge which combine with soft hues of beige and warm grey textured paint to complete the palette.
A mixture of Villa types were sensitively designed to respond to the local climatic conditions whilst maximizing views out to the surrounding beach, sea and paddy fields. Careful consideration is given to each villa plan and its built form and details to create a comfortable, energy efficient resort style living.
PASSIVE DESIGN ELEMENT
The climatic parameters particular to site, sun movement and prevailing wind direction, were established to assist in the formulation of the orientation of villas and common areas, and their planning concept.
The major building orientation is toward the North-South direction. Some are tilted a few degrees to the East to incorporate the morning sun. Openings were maximized on North-South face to encourage filtered natural light into the building whilst minimizing large openings on west side to reduce heat gain during daytime. Provision of overhanging roof eaves, roof screen systems and deep ledges were employed to reduce heat from direct sunlight.
Operable windows are provided on at least two sides of each room plan, and on each end of the villa to encourage effective cross ventilation and to bring in natural air to the interior spaces. Cross ventilation to all room interiors would provide natural cooling and sufficient fresh air intake in room to minimize CO2 level, thus reducing the reliance on Air Conditioning Systems.
In addition to the siting aspect and layout design of the villas, several design elements and materials were intentionally selected to control the buildings on a micro-climate level.
Provision of a 2nd layer of timer trellis on villa roof would minimize direct heat absorption to the roof itself; the actual roof incorporates additional insulation to further reduce heat gain internally. Material finishes are using “cool colors” in both the paint and stone selections to minimize the absorption of thermal energy, local materials selected naturally respond to the local climate, for e.g. Paras Kelating, Paras Kerobokan, Batu Chandi & Batu Kali for Feature Walls throughout the resort. Location of planters and position of low shrubs and taller trees would be placed to maximize wind flow through villa and common spaces, thus avoiding creation of wind barriers.
The exterior hardscape and softscape designs are intended to create a seamless transition between the interior and exterior spaces, with the specific goal in preserving the natural topography. Built elements are planned to sit ‘lightly’ on the land. The selection of trees responds to both the local climate and the resort planning with tree types playing a key role in the creation of ‘shaded spaces’, private pavilions and communal areas.
Due to the relatively severe coastal conditions which exist during certain periods of the year, the landscape design also incorporates a variety of indigenous local plants and coastal ‘hardy’ species, for e.g. Ipomoea Pes-caprae, Scaevola Taccada, Cocos Nucifera & Cerbera Odollam. This selection identifies and responds to the need for less long term maintenance and reduced water requirements for irrigation.”
Photos by: Mario Wibowo
The architectural firm Rob Paulus Architects renovated this construction in 2012 for a doctor. Its size is of 4500 ft2, and is located in Tucson, Arizona, USA. This renovation opens up the house to encompass the lush desert landscape while improving the interior of the property. The new shapes are crisp and clean to contrast with the rounded exterior of the existing building.
Using a reductive approach in the interior, the walls are disassembled to provide better function, circulation, and views. Outside, an existing trellis porch transforms into an outdoor living room and a kitchen with a new elevated canopy.
A palette of colors and natural material dominates the new scheme with an emphasis on fir wood that was influenced by the client’s desire to create spaces inspired by nature. This warm wood is used in all interior cabinets, but it also appears on the outside as the bottom part of the roof plane that hangs over the area of the outdoor room. The existing closed house is transformed to interact with the exterior while creating a relaxing interior space in a decidedly modern transformation.
This new home of some 300 square meters was designed in the Puntarenas Canton area of Costa Rica by the architectural firm Benjamin Garcia Saxe Architecture in 2013. The Gooden-Nahome family wanted to create their home on the Pacific coast of Costa Rica and found an incredible site overlooking the sea. The biggest obstacle they found was that the site was predominantly on a very steep slope, and the view of the ocean is captured only in the upper-middle part of the ground. However, they did not see this as a negative aspect but rather saw the opportunity to explore together an architecture that was appropriate for these conditions.
Together they explored the possibilities of creating large retaining walls in order to relocate the house on the land, which is a technique commonly used by most houses in the area.
In the end, they decided to do exactly the opposite, and in fact allow the slope, land, vegetation, water and animals to flow underneath the house. The house was elevated, and by doing so, made it possible to save on the immense cost of creating retaining walls. This almost common sense decision created a very light intervention that allows the terrain to breathe while providing a spectacular ocean view from the key location on the site.
By Magaly • Oct 30, 2018
Located in the village of Baaddat in Mount Lebanon, twenty miles above Beirut, this detached villa has excellent views over the mountainous landscape. It has an area of 562 square meters and was designed in 2016 by the architectural firm Joe Serrins Studio, under the guidance of its architects Joe Serrins and Jared Brownell. The property is covered with pine nut trees that cling to the rocky slope that falls twenty meters on a 45 degree slope. The architecture allows us to cross the steep slope and put us in contact with the landscape.
The program is organized by floors: the lowest level is the garage, and level two includes a media room and three bedrooms. The third level is the living room that has high ceilings and the largest of the four terraces. The fourth level contains the master suite and a private terrace with a pool hidden against the hillside. The building is mostly made of concrete, typical of structures of this size in the region.
The exterior is covered with a coarse gray stone interrupted by a volume of white plaster and several folding glass planes with operable doors. The landscape terraces and property debris walls are made with a local rock with a rough face.
By Magaly • Oct 16, 2018
This castle, which is located at the top of a bamboo-clad mountain in the Chinese province of Zhejiang, near Hangzhou, was built in 1910 by a Scottish doctor. The property, which is an eco luxe complex with Afro Asian decoration and medieval roots, has been recently completely reconstructed by the architectural firm Shanghai Tianhua Architectural Design, conscientiously and taking care to include a great amount detail.
Among the benefits that such a rural location offers are included a regional farm to table cuisine and the ability to include an impressive cantilevered infinity pool, which the structure takes complete advantage of, including panoramic accommodations that range from the rustic to the regal.
Completely surrounded by thick forests, the enchanting bungalows feature private outdoor hot tubs looking out to the charming landscape, while the spacious and bright Cliffside Suites are decorated with traditional South African motifs and extra large tubs which sit in front of the window and overlooking the mountains. For the ultimate king and queen retreat, opt for one of the themed Castle suites, which are absolutely flooded with sumptuous fabrics and luxurious amenities.
This house, located on the top of a mountain in Marušići, Croatia, is a holiday home designed by the firm Studio Ante Murales d.o.o. in 2016. The architects Ante Nikša Bilić, Sunčica Mastelić Ivić and Hrvojka Kalogjera were responsible for carrying out this project, which covers an area of 270 square meters.
The conditions of the microclimate and the view from the site determined the design of the building. But the same applies to the materiality and tactile properties of the house. The cubes are made of concrete and are related to the rocks of the Biokovo mountain range due to their color.
The traditional construction of small rural houses in this area involves the construction of the whole building with a single material. As such, this home was mainly made of stone, and the roof was made of stone slabs. This practice resulted in beautiful functional units of spaces that were either open or covered by vines and tiles.
And as the people in charge of this project say: “To direct a space to live in, the space must be filled with us. I wanted to protect myself from the sun, to protect myself from the wind, the rain and the cold. I wanted all the windows and openings to be full of the sea.” Their wishes are now a reality.
Just one hour from the center of Lima, Peru in the area of Chaclacayo, this home of 528 square meters is used to get away from the chaotic city. A perfect place to embrace peace and tranquility, surrounded by family. It was designed by the architecture firm SOMA Lima under the direction of the architects Daniela Chong, Daniella Suazo, and Andrea Silva in 2017.
The architectural program of the house includes living room, dining room, four bedrooms, kitchen, living room, service area, and a separate volume of bungalows that house four guest bedrooms.
The main house has an integrated and oversized living and dining room, since this is the main social space and where the whole family gathers. With a double height ceiling, this space expands both vertically and horizontally, and integrates the interior with the exterior, creating a covered terrace surrounded by green.
The intimate area of the bedrooms opens onto another garden to the west of the house to maintain privacy, while the other social spaces, such as the kitchen and living room, are visually integrated with the rest of the house.
When entering, the main house located towards the bottom of the land is framed by a large garden, with the hills and blue sky in the background.
The Ghost Wash House, as this private property is called, was designed by Architecture – Infrastructure – Research, Inc., which is an architecture and urban design firm focused on applying advanced research methods and sustainable practices into designs that cover the needs and wishes of each client, and which was founded by Darren Petrucci in 2001. The home is located along the lower hillside of the north side of Camelback Mountain in Paradise Valley, a small, affluent town in Maricopa County, Arizona, in the United States. It was completed in 2017 and covers a total ground area of 8,500 square feet.
The site is flanked by two desert washes that move water from the top of the mountain into the valley below. A third topographic condition — a “Ghost Wash” — runs through the center of the site, giving the property its name, and is framed by brick bars.
The eastern of these two protects the wash from the desert sun that shines upon it in the morning. It also houses the garages, the kitchen, an office, and the family room. The western bar shields the property from the intensely hot west sun as it sets in the valley. In turn, it houses the private areas of the home, such as the bedrooms, another family room, and a recreation space. The living room and dining room are house in the interior of a long sequence of courtyards and gardens that flow along the Ghost Wash from the south entry to the north pool house.
Redesigned Private Residence that Still Maintains Traces of the Traditional Architecture of the Area
By Magaly • Sep 27, 2018
House P is a private residence located in Styria, in southeastern Austria, as evidenced by the spectacular rolling hills that characterize the landscape by which it is surrounded. It was designed in 2015 by Irene Nikolaus of Gangoly & Kristiner Architekten, an Austrian architectural firm with offices in Vienna and Graz, and covers a total ground area of 330 square meters.
The home resembles, in structure, an old barn, and so recalls and preserves the architectural traditions of the area. The complex consists of a main home and four annexes, which were once farm buildings themselves. It is this main building which continues to hold the main residential areas of the property, whereas the old barn has been adapted and converted into a garage and storage space. The remaining structures – which were previously used for the production and storage of wine – have been repurposed and are now used as a guest house, and a pool and wellness house.
The interior of the building mixes contemporary design and a rustic country feel seamlessly, creating an atmosphere that is unique and innovative. Scarce decorative accessories, including tasteful works of art, allow the home to have a sense of serenity and amplitude, and the floor to ceiling glass walls provide it with an easy relationship with the exterior.
This project is an annex of a house that serves as a leisure area and has an indoor pool. It is located in a residential neighborhood of Curitiba, Brazil and was designed in 2016 by the architect Jorge Elmor Neto of the architectural firm Elmor Arquitetura.
The 190 square meters that covers the space are located on a single floor, surrounded by a large area comprised of wood. In the program requested by the clients, accessibility has always been at the top of the list of requirements and all spaces, dimensions, circulations, and materials were designed to meet all kinds of special needs.
The annex is a rectangular volume of 18 meters long by 8 meters wide, executed in exposed concrete (with wooden laths) and glass (aluminum frames with double layers of glass), forming a contemporary and timeless architectural ensemble, robust in durability but lighter in compositional lines. Living room and dining room are integrated to host social activities. The large, sliding glass doors open completely, allowing free access to the outside, doubling the size of living room. The swimming pool, the garden, and several adjoining terraces offer multiple uses and occupations for various activities. Its occupants can float between spaces while the sun and light move until nightfall.
By Magaly • Sep 19, 2018
This construction, in which glass and concrete act as protagonists, is located in a pericentral neighborhood of the city of Córdoba, in Argentina. It has been designed by the architectural firm Adolfo Mondejar – Architects Studio under the direction of its professionals, Adolfo Mondejar, Francisco Figueroa Astrain, Adriana Barberis, and Ezequiel Lauria. It is intended for a young family, and covers an area of nearly 350 square meters.
The program incorporates intermediate spaces such as the gallery, the green expansion of the bedrooms, and a pond in the master bedroom, which give the necessary environmental conditions. Also, there is a space of semi-open expansion in the living room, conceived with vines that refresh the interior of the house from the south and propose a new place of play and rest. The social areas of the home are accessed directly from the gallery.
A concrete staircase leads to a terrace space for events. The idea is summarized in two concrete walls that have a large slab of exposed concrete for a ceiling, 4 meters above the ground, creating the gallery. To further preserve the vision of concrete walls, three interior boxes lined with quebracho wood were designed to hold the bathrooms, toilets, and bedrooms.
By Magaly • Sep 7, 2018
The Mirrorhouse is a private residence located in the Trousdale Estates of Beverly Hills, a city in Los Angeles County, California, in the United States. The home was designed by XTEN Architecture and completed in 2016, covering a total ground area of 8,000 square feet. It enjoys an incredible view of Downtown Los Angeles, as well as the Pacific Ocean.
The challenge presented to XTEN Architecture was to create a simple, rational home that emphasized its connection with the surrounding landscape, all of this done in order to celebrate the unique lifestyle that Beverly Hills and Los Angeles have to offer.
The kitchen and living room are open and spacious, done in a stark white that enhances this sense of space, with accents done in neutral tones that play with contrast. These rooms open out to a terrace with a pool, and, beyond, the view of the city, creating a continuity and a dialogue between the interior and the exterior that is irresistible and exquisite.
The entirety of the floor plan is developed around five volumes which enclose the private spaces of the house. Such an arrangement creates negative space, which in turn becomes the main living and circulating space, providing a free flowing travel route throughout the home, as well as views out to the exterior and the city.
The Toorak Residence, as this private home is called, is located in Toorak, an affluent inner suburb of Melbourne, Victoria, Australia, 5 km south-east of Melbourne’s Central Business District. The home was designed by Architecton, a Melbourne-based architectural firm, and led by Daniel Galtieri and Nick Lukas. Covering a total ground area of over 1,000 square meters, the project was completed in 2016.
The four bedroom private residence attempts to achieve a balance between elegance and relaxation, and it accomplishes it by creating spaces that are elegantly contemporary while blurring the lines between indoors and outdoors by creating spaces that are freely open to the exterior.
The interior design is mostly minimalist, allowing the architectural elements — made out of concrete, wood, and metal — to speak for themselves, but it is nevertheless full of welcoming spaces that ensure that the structure feels like a family home.
In the back, the home holds a pool, accompanied by a terrace with a sitting area, a perfect place in which to sit and relax on a warm day or evening. The touches of greenery and subtle flowering give it a sense of vibrant life that add to the sense of pleasantness of the space.
By Magaly • Sep 3, 2018
This Victorian Residence is the result of the efforts of Nick Lukas, architect part of the team at Architecton, a Melbourne-based architectural firm. The home is located in Middle Park, an inner suburb of Melbourne, Victoria, Australia, which is situated 4 kilometers south of Melbourne’s Central Business District. The project was completed in 2016, and covers a total ground area of 420 square meters.
The project consists of an addition to a three bedroom private residence, building upon the reputation of Middle Park as home to some of the best preserved and aged architecture in the city of Melbourne. As such, the front façade of the home was left untouched in order to respect this architectural tradition and preserve the historical context of the home, and the addition is located in the back of the original building. The materials used include stone, concrete, and metal, coming together to create a timeless effect.
The addition looks as if it were another building entirely, the styles are so different. While the front has a traditional Victorian front with a delicately trimmed porch, the back is characterized by straight lines and austere surfaces. They are brought together by the interior, which is vast and brightly illuminated, done in neutral tones that bring a sense of serenity and peace to it.
By Magaly • Aug 30, 2018
This property was designed for a young couple with 2 pet dogs, in the city of Dallas, Texas, by the local architecture firm Wernerfield, led by architectural professionals Braxton Werner and Paul Field. It is located in the exclusive Bluffview neighborhood. One of the necessary requirements was that the space needed to have a modern style, while staying within a moderate budget.
The clients wanted large expanses of glass that would open the house to the outdoors, but they also wanted a sense of privacy, a challenging request given that the rectangular construction site was parallel to a busy street. In addition, for an optimal orientation of the sun, the architects wanted to open the west elevation facing the street.
The residence has three modules, each with a different function. The central module contains a kitchen, dining room, and living room equipped with polished concrete floors and wooden cabinets. A retractable glass wall allows the space to be completely open to the outside. To the north there is a two-story volume that houses private functions. A master suite and an office are on the ground floor, and a bedroom and media room are located on the second floor.
The third module, located to the south, contains a garage. A glass-walled lobby with a large front door connects the garage to the main living room.