House on the house or Forum Limbach is an old farm house in Limbach im Burgenland, Austria designed by Looping Architecture. The farmyard was expanded by an architecturally exciting chapter; the annex serves as a discussion forum and venue. On top sits the upper storey as “house on the house” with the principal’s private rooms. The new building, fitted into the historically grown farmyard structure, closes the rural square edifice and at the same time opens up the previously enclosed inner yard. This apparently contradictory double function is made possible by the building’s clever horizontal bisection. The “house on the house”, entirely clad in a red polyurethane skin, faces east-west, the necessary rotation out of the original property’s axes emphasizes that it is a newcomer in the conglomerate. It is accessed via a self-supporting stairway quoting the ladders which belong to the farmyard image. In the farmyard’s biography, the annex project marks a visionary new beginning without overwriting the property’s naturalness.
Little Venice House was designed for a family of four by Andy Martin Architect in Little Venice, West London, England. Warren and Claire Johnson live in Little Venice with their two young boys Charlie, three, and Jake, two. Their apartment is set on the ground floor of grade I listed mansion terrace overlooking one of London’s most beautiful garden squares. With ceilings reaching 4.5 meters, the space has been designed and converted to suit their busy work and family lifestyle. The architects were appointed to help achieve this.
Private rooms moved to the north and public living spaces to the south overlooking the gardens. Every area has been remodeled to offer abundant storage and walls purposely left free to offer space for their expanding art collection. Existing details were removed from doors and walls and reinstated the moulded ceilings and parquet flooring. New elements are made obvious by the use of color or texture, and are designed more like interventions.
A penthouse next to the port of Barcelona, Spain with views and plenty of natural light was given a modern renovation to adapt perfectly to the lifestyle of the owners. The owners are a young couple, newly married, without children and with much social life, knew that it could become the home of their dreams. They trusted the project and decoration to the studio of Pia Capdevila Interiors & Events. The first step was a demolition of all partitions to achieve a new, very modern distribution, with two well defined public and private spaces. In the center of the attic and to the left from the entrance, the kitchen, open and connected to the living room was an environment that extends out to a terrace, recovered to take advantage of the reform. The private area, to the right of the entrance, is accessed through a corridor that leads to two bedrooms and two bathrooms.
The Interior Designer combined smooth walls with brick and gave maximum prominence to a front, covered with slabs of natural stone. This large irregular surface enriched with its chromatic mix and its relief decoration in black, white and steel kitchen. Continuous concrete flooring painted in a gray tone epoxy serves as a common thread among the environments, gives cohesion to the project and contributes, along with natural light, to creating more spaciousness in the home. To highlight the interior design, designs were made by Studio Pia Capdevila, from the headboard with bedside tables along the bedroom wall, to the base unit that runs along the window of the living room.
Photos: Spotted on Mi Casa
When Eva and Gerard Rüecker moved to Berlin, Germany after several years of living in London, they sought to settle in a home that at first seemed impossible. The couple dreamed to find a paradise in the middle of the city, a bright and spacious home with a garden for children to play. They purchased a derelict old factory building, preserving the facade to fulfill their wish. They then surrendered to the charm of the building and its great possibilities. They hired Berlin architecture Studio Miethe+Quehl to conduct a total rehabilitation, creating a light-filled home with highly functional and open spaces.
The Swedish owner wanted to reflect their Scandinavian roots in the basics of interior design, creating family environments, a sauna on the top floor and light wood flooring throughout by the brand Dinesen, which brings a fantastic natural atmosphere, in addition to the natural light that enters through the large windows of the old factory. The comfort of the home is not only through the articulation of spaces, the family favorite is, in addition to the garden, the kitchen/living room/play space of 1,076 square feet (100 square meters), but also furniture and details. There are a few comfortable and classic pieces of design mixed with more current furnishings, even some vintage pieces; all, with a cozy touch of freshness and naturalness.
Photos: Spotted on Nuevo Estilo
Joyce & Jeroen house renovation was an overhaul of a traditional townhouse in The Hague, Netherlands by Dutch studio Personal Architecture. The dilapidated state has necessitated a thorough reinforcement of the foundation and load-bearing structure of the entire house, opening up extraordinary possibilities in an otherwise commonplace apartment renovation. The combination of ambitious design visions and a large measure of trust from the client have resulted in a rigorous and uncompromising redesign, in which voids and split levels accentuate the full height of Den Haag’s typical row houses.
They added mezzanine floors, a glass elevation, a triple-height kitchen and a spiral staircase. Whilst the front half of the house retains its original facade and layout, the architects removed the brickwork garden elevation and replaced it with a steel framework and full-height glass wall, generating an optimal source of daylight. The interplay of voids, the split-levels and the glass facade, all create a spectacular drama between interior and exterior on the one hand, and between the existing and new floors on the other.
The intervention in the back of the house can be interpreted as a three-dimensional, L-shaped element of five storeys, accessed by a new steel spiral staircase. The staircase brings a new dynamic between the different parts of the house and makes a separation between owners and guests possible. Vertically, the L-shaped element ends in a roof-terrace with jacuzzi and outer kitchen that lies far above the balconies of the lower floors.
Small sets of steps connect the four mezzanine levels with the three existing floors of the house, while the original staircases provide a link between floors at the front of the house.
Above the kitchen, a translucent polycarbonate wall lets light into the master bedroom though a walk-in wardrobe positioned at its back.
A wire-fence balustrade creates a balcony on the second floor, so residents can look down from an office to the kitchen below.
Four new mezzanines overlook the kitchen from the side of the house, providing a new bathroom, library and pantry that feature untreated pine walls and floors. A steel staircase spirals up between the levels and leads up to a rooftop terrace and hot tub.
The architects cut away sections of the first and second floors, creating a triple-height kitchen filled with natural light.
Photos: René de Wit
Manor House Stables was once a stable that housed a retired racehorse named “Lovely Cottage” in Headbourne Worthy, Winchester, United Kingdom. The stables were once beautiful and functioning but have since the mid 1900’s have remained unused and have fallen into shambles. Since the stable block is steeped in historical character, it has since been transformed into an elegant and contemporary three bedroom family home by AR Design Studio. The concept was to preserve the existing while making any new additions simple and pure in order to let the original character shine.
This results in an innovative arrangement of spaces according to the Stable’s existing layout, in order to maintain many of the existing exposed timber interior walls. These were then cleaned, stripped back and refurbished to reveal an exquisite amount of detailing and craftsmanship. With the existing internal walls brought back to life, the next task was to turn the Stables into a home for the modern family and bring it into the present day. In order to respect the character of the property a clean, contemporary and neutral approach was taken to the rest of the renovation which juxtaposes perfectly with the original timber walls, allowing them to stand out as pieces of art against a beautifully simple contemporary backdrop.
Many of the existing features were refurbished and re-purposed for use in the home environment; the original horse troughs were cleaned and converted for use as sink basins, the old horse ties act as towel rings in the bathrooms and original doors are preserved where possible to give a sense of real period character. The Stables benefit from three large double bedrooms, with two en-suite rooms to accompany a spacious family bathroom.
Being a single storey property with long continuous views, the layout was tailored and split between sleeping and living accommodation with a single constant circulation running through the entire building. The welcoming and spacious open-plan kitchen dining area is conveniently located at the heart of the home, leading into the light and roomy lounge which benefits from full height glazed doors that open out onto the sleepy village setting.
The entire property is super insulated, and the heated polished concrete floor throughout provides a functional uniformity to the spaces as well as recounting the Stable’s agricultural history. New windows and roof lights fitted throughout give the whole place a warm, bright and clean feel; creating an excellent environment as a backdrop for a family home.
The finished Stables is completely transformed from its existing dilapidated condition and is now a perfectly working family home, bursting with contemporary style juxtaposed against delightful period character.
Prior to the Renovation:
Photos: Martin Gardner
A complete contemporary renovation of Aquatic Park penthouse is located atop a concrete high rise in San Francisco, California by Craig Steely Architecture. The project involved complex considerations relating to the mobilization of materials and the impact to building residents. The original four bedroom and four bath penthouse was transformed into an open floor plan to take advantage of the views on both the north and south sides of the unit. Modern finishes include book-matched walnut cabinetry, live edge walnut slab countertops, steel and walnut bookcases, handmade mosaic tiled walls, gun blued steel and clear and etched 1/2″ glass.
Photos: Rien van Rijthoven
Market is a two-storey penthouse loft designed by Rad Design Inc., situated in an old historic building built in 1858 that was once a wholesale grocery warehouse along the waterfront of downtown Toronto, Ontario, Canada. When designer Golbou Rad first entered this loft, green and red walls are what greeted her, along with dim lighting from the lack of large windows as well as dilapidated interior finishes and old appliances. The re-design of the two-level, 1,200 square foot space begun with a fresh coat of white paint to brighten up the space for the young professional clients. The designer selected subtle materials and finishes in the loft, being careful not to take away from the well-worn texture and colors of the exposed brick.
Bright colored cabinetry and walls lightened up the space and allowed the wood structure and exposed ducts and piping to stand out, which emphasized the industrial character of the building and gave the loft a raw appeal.
The clients both have sailing backgrounds, and wished to add some of their own decor to the design, such as the ship’s wheel displayed on the exposed brick wall.
An antique lighthouse lantern anchors a bedside table vignette, adding another nautical touch to the room.
The new sliding barn doors allow enough space for the drawers of the new vanity to open with ease.
Prior to Renovation:
Photos: Courtesy of Rad Design Inc.
Nestled on 12 acres of land with a barn and swimming pool, the William Wurster Ranch, a mid-century modern home renovated by Moller Architecture in collaboration with interior designer Charles DeLisle, is situated in Portola Valley, just outside of Silicon Valley, California. The ranch house was originally designed by William Wurster in the early 1950s and though it was well-built for it day, the house need to have vitality injected back into it. After a successful collaboration on another home for the owners, Ian Moller was asked to adapt the house to their needs. The family is a young professional couple with children; this ranch is their summer home. Because it was only going to be used seasonally, the couple wanted the home to be modern and playful, but sophisticated and long-lasting — something suiting their style that also could be used for generations.
A breezeway that connected to separate guest quarters was incorporated into the floor plan of the house. A large kitchen, breakfast room and family room were incorporated into the design along with all new bedrooms and bathrooms. Products were chosen a bit randomly, inspired by old photographs; he used a combination of custom designs, vintage pieces, and more modern purchases from high-end showrooms. The palette of materials includes an earthy mix of terrazzo, western red cedar, locally produced custom tile work and contrasting steel details. In addition to the main house renovation, the project includes a new barn, pool house and a 75 foot pool.
Bringing the outdoors in, DeLisle used wood paneling to offset another of his custom creations, a soft daybed set against wood stump tables cut from trees on the property.
Vintage lighting is a common theme throughout the house. DeLisle was able to achieve a quirky sense of elegance in this house, that isn’t always attainable with more standard lighting choices.
This cozy fireplace, built into the home’s 12-inch thick adobe walls, was created into a snug sitting area with a 1940s Danish chair, French vintage table, and a unique Gio Ponti light fixture above the mantle.
DeLisle designed the dining room chandelier. This geometric light fixture is made of raw brass hexagonal tubing hung with handwoven rope.
The bathroom was designed in the aesthetic that the owner’s wanted, simple, functional and beautiful. The cabinet is customized with laminate, making it moisture-resistant and easy to clean and has vintage hardware.
Photos: Art Gray
Baker Street Residence is an existing single fronted weatherboard in Melbourne’s beach suburb of Elwood, designed by FGR Architects. The client brief was to compliment the residence with a contemporary addition to accommodate a family with three bedrooms and two bath and create space and volume in an otherwise constricted residence.
The tight sight presented the challenge to design around the restricting building envelope and maximise internal volume. This was achieved through implementation of double level height spaces and floor to ceiling glass at the rear of the building, creating an outdoor entertaining extension to the kitchen/ living space as well as high quality natural light throughout the residence.
Maintaining a simple palate of three materials, the compilation of concrete, timber and glass meets the existing materials of plaster and metal in a smooth intersection and is enriched with a polished concrete floor paired with concrete kitchen bench top completing the clean, contemporary affect. To capitalize on bay and sunset views a timber roof terrace was created also allowing for a secondary outdoor entertaining area to the verdant rear garden.
Photos: Axiom Photography