This truly beautiful residential property is called Swellendam House, designed by GASS Architecture in rural South Africa. The dwelling is peacefully located in Swellendam, at the door-step of the breathtaking mountains and valleys of Langeberg Mountains. The view is so magnificent that the locals have entitled the area as “God’s Window.” The exquisite setting is what set the stage for the design of the residence, using simple forms and materials in the architecture to facilitate a subtle intervention to immerse gently into the softly folding landscape. The buildings were comprised of locally sourced materials and textures reminiscent of its distinctly South African origins. All efforts were made to make the house as sustainable as possible.
According to the architects, “The buildings that comprise the house, while simple in form and texture, are intentionally oriented on the site to engage the surroundings. The house is composed of three discrete box structures forming three edges of a private courtyard. The largest box form contains the public areas, the entertainment, living, and kitchen spaces. This box, with its glass facade and uplifted roof, opens itself up completely to its surrounding. In contrast, the smaller boxes, flanking to form either side of the courtyard, include the private domains of the bedroom and bathrooms, and on one side, a movie room. These buildings are made of thick masonry walls and concrete roofs, which form cave-like, intimate spaces where one can retreat for solitary quietude. The purposeful orientation of these three buildings as perimeters to a courtyard creates a spatial relationship with the mountains, which, in essence, form the last perimeter of the courtyard. Moreover, the structural and material qualities of these buildings, accentuated even further with the line of the main roof structure ascending towards the sky, is in direct dialogue with “God’s Window” as if the earth were communing with the heavens.” Via
Visit the website of GASS Architecture here.
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