Villa CP is an old Catalan farmhouse that has been completely restored by Barcelonese studio ZEST Architecture, situated in Girona, Spain. A 21st century house has been created within the structure of the old stone property. The existing stone walls have been largely rebuilt, with enormous openings towards the landscape linking the house to its spectacular surroundings: a National Park of cork oak with distant views towards the Mediterranean.
ZEST Architecture’s work is always marked by sustainability, so it may not come as a surprise that this project sports materials and elements such as a natural pool whose water is filtered by plants and gravel, insulation with locally harvested and produced cork, clay and stray panel finishes in the interior and heating / cooling through a geothermal installation.
The old and the new (that which will age) strengthen each other in this project through their opposition and juxtaposition. The old has been left visible with all its scars, while new materials such as Corten steel, wood and clay, were chosen for the beauty of their natural imperfections and the way in which the traces left by time make them even more beautiful. Rain, wind, human touch…. will make sure that this house will be even more beautiful over time.
ZEST Architecture, founded by the Dutch architect Co Govers, will take part in the Biennale of Venice, which opens on 7 June 2014. The project Villa CP, the restoration of an old Catalan farmhouse, serves as inspiration for the installation that ZEST Architecture will present in Palazzo Mora, as participant in the exhibition “Time Space Existence”, organized by the Global Art Affairs Foundation.
Photos: Jesús Granada
Travertine Dream House is a modern single family home that has been designed by Wallflower Architecture + Design, situated in Serangoon, Singapore. The client, inspired by Italian urban-scape from his travels, requested maximizing functionality throughout the home including using up all available space in the design plan and the incorporation of greenery. Aesthetically, travertine was to be used copiously as an architectural finish.
Here is further information from the design team about the development of the project: The house is organized as two parallel blocks connected by a glass enclosed bridge. The separation between the two blocks allows daylight to stream down to basement spaces. Thick travertine walls and large overhangs are placed on the western side to limit heat gain from the harsh afternoon sun. The entry, living spaces and bedrooms are arranged longitudinally to take advantage of natural cross ventilation and daylight. In order to intensify land use without ending up with an imposing structure, the four storied house has one level sunk into the ground and the other three set away from the access road.
To accommodate as much green and ‘blue’ space as possible, the gardens and water bodies are spread throughout the house. The living and dining areas on the ground floor face a swimming pool and a fish pond. The basement’s entertainment and guest rooms are open to the sky, with natural light and ventilation coming through a sunken moss garden courtyard. The third storey flat roof is both a recreational deck and a roof garden.
The arrival experience is orchestrated by several layers of travertine wall that suggest a tenuous threshold between the outside and the inside. The detailing is deliberately minimal and precise to enhance the simplicity of the massing and the juxtaposition of solidity and transparency.
The narrow blocks that house the living area, the thick stone cladding, multiple levels of gardens and water bodies ensure that the house remains cool in the tropical environment, well ventilated and washed in soft daylight. The three dimensional composition of voids, layers and solids creates spaces for both quiet reflection and family interaction, something for each mood and moment.
Photos: Jeremy San
Solis Residence is a breathtaking house set within its stunning natural surroundings on Hamilton Island, Queensland, Australia. Designed by Renato D’Ettorre Architects, the home has been carved into a steep edge of Hamilton Island, brilliantly sculpting three interlocking levels to frame extraordinary views of islands in the Whitsundays waters. The home is sculpted from concrete, stone, block work and glass resulting in a sequence of dramatic volumes incorporating airy living spaces and private sheltered outdoor zones. the building elements are intertwined with reflection ponds and a swimming pool, lending a sense of tranquility and sensuous tactility whilst providing casual, elegant outdoor living amid the beauty and serenity of the island.
From the architect: As a design practice, our aim is to create evocative architecture which satisfies the human need for textural and tactile experience. Solis on Hamilton Island draws inspiration from its magnificent location and Mediterranean coastal architecture: simple, permeable volumes opening and unfolding, capturing distant views of water and land.
This site, within its luscious natural setting, brings the weather seasons into focus with the vegetation’s glorious display of color, texture and flower – nature’s constant reminders of life’s cycles. Remaining connected to these surroundings was one of the key elements driving the design of the house.
Terraces are fluid extensions of internal spaces capturing cooling breezes and allowing cross ventilation. Bedroom terraces frame magnificent views of water and garden, distant lands and the horizon, so that falling asleep or waking is never a mundane ritual. Special attention was taken designing the bathrooms:eliminating superfluous detail and relating to the natural surroundings imbues the spaces with a sense of well-being and purity that is invigorating for the body and stimulating for the mind.
Always connected to water, the interiors are sheltered and cool: swimming pools, reflection ponds and strategically positioned trickling waterfalls soothe both indoors and outdoors, as each rain droplet resonates through the spaces.
In contrast to this sense of tranquility, equally critical to the design was to provide a high degree of safety to the occupants by integrating building regulations so that the house is able to withstand the destructive forces of tropical cyclones that are common in this region of Queensland.
Construction method and material selection was influenced not only by the climate but also the client who had expressed preference for low maintenance materials on a sub-tropical site with extreme weather: long periods of hot, humid conditions and prolonged heavy rain during the wet season limit material lifespan.
Another factor was regional Council’s limit on colors: white and primary colors were not permissible. For these reasons concrete became the primary material; utilizing its eternal qualities of extreme resiliency, excellent thermal properties, the textural quality and hue of rough sawn timber boards echoing the trunks of gum trees and large grey weathered boulders on the site. Further, concrete allows for a ready-made finish eliminating the use of render and paint as well as lending instant patina.
Wall and floor finishes, such as polished concrete, unfilled honed travertine tiles and textured internal renders were selected for their durability and tactile qualities; the irresistible urge to experience the house bare-feet whilst enjoying the touch of the smooth, cool stone.
The design seeks to balance the human spirit by the enriching experience gained in re-connecting with nature through the simple act of observing the wonders of its ever-changing scenery and by harnessing its benefits: off-shore cool breezes, warm evenings, spectacular sunsets, lush vegetation and the beauty of tropical rainfalls.
Many of the materials and building features of the home were selected and acquired in France, in order to create a character and aestheticism not often seen outside of the southern French countryside. The approach to the interiors globally, as well as in the selection and delineation of the interior finishes, millwork designs, etc. was to create a practical family home, and to let the interior finishes recede into a believable and simple backdrop.
The interiors are not wholly historical, but do utilize antiques to harmonize with the building itself. The color palette was created to be muted, and to resist trend. The finishes for all interior features are understated, and perfectly practical for a comfortable family retreat.
Photos: Werner Segarra
This renovated farm compound in the Val d’Aran, a valley in the Pyrenees Mountains of Catalonia, northern Spain, consists of three traditional Pyrenean farm buildings that were reconfigured in 2000 to create a compound, with a total of six bedrooms. Where possible, the original stone and wood were retained or refinished in the renovation. Exteriors are native stone, the roofs slate. The interior walls are lime plaster, and the wooden beams and trimwork are cherry, oak and fir. An oil furnace powers a radiant-heat system throughout the compound.
The barn and the house on the 1.8-acre property have been joined by a passageway, creating a total of about 5,100 square feet of interior space. The first floor of the main house is configured as a great room, housing a double-height living area with a fireplace and mountain views, a dining area, and an eat-in kitchen. The kitchen counters are stainless steel, and top-of-the-line appliances include a Lacanche gas range.
The main living area, with a mezzanine to the left that leads to bedrooms on the second floor.
A Lacanche gas range, center, is a highlight of the eat-in kitchen, which has stainless steel countertops.
The second floor of the main house has two bedrooms and one bath; the third floor has the master bedroom, with a bay window affording valley views, and a children’s playroom that could be converted to a bedroom. The now-attached barn has a full-floor recreation room and a sleeping area with exposed beams on the second floor, and guest quarters with two bedrooms and two bath on the first.
A recreation room on the top floor of the former barn, which has been connected to the main house.
A sleeping area in the barn.
Across a cobblestone courtyard, a former stable now accommodates a professional-grade recording studio and garage space for three cars. The upper level has an exercise room, a sauna and a bath.
A view of the recording studio in the annex; it currently has professional-quality equipment, and walls and part of the ceiling are lined with acoustic panels.
The house and barn are joined by a parlor, seen at right.
Photos: NY Times
Stone wall bathrooms add texture, color and pattern with a modern rustic appeal that is very natural and eco-friendly yet luxurious at the same time. Stone is a great material for to design your bathroom with, it is long-lasting and easy to find. There are a variety of finishes that can be applied to dimension stone to achieve diverse architectural and aesthetic effects. These finishes include, but are not limited to polished and honed finishes, and more textured finishes such as bush-hammered, sandblasted, and thermal. There are many ideas on how to apply stone into your bathroom design scheme, such as a floor to ceiling accent wall, stone flooring, stone countertops, stone showers, a stone wall above a built-in bathtub, the options are limitless. Stone bathtubs look amazing and warm, and so do the washbasins. Rough stone creates a rustic atmosphere with a natural twist and sleek stone adds luxury and elegance.
We have put together a collection of striking bathrooms below that feature natural stone walls that will help you get started on a new bathroom or renovating an existing one. If you are looking for further inspiration, be sure to check out some of our other bathroom collections, such as 51 Mesmerizing master bathrooms with fireplaces and 51 Insanely beautiful rustic barn bathrooms.
Photo Sources: 1. Eldorado Stone, 2. Est Est Interior Design, 3. High Camp Home, 4. House and Leisure, 5. Christine Suzuki & Associates, 6. Dara Rosenfeld Design, 7. Candent Design, 8. Ashley Campbell Interior Design, 9. Eldorado Stone, 10. Arizona Designs Kitchens and Baths, 11. High Camp Home, 12. Identity Construction, 13. Helen Scott, 14. Hyland Custom Cabinetry, 15. Ashley Campbell Interior Design, 16. INK Design Lab, 17. Moon Bros Inc, 18. Geberit, 19. JLF & Associates, 20. Redmond Aldrich Design, 21. ÁBATON Architects, 22. Holly Rickert Design, 23. Eldorado Stone, 24. Ravine Inside Interior Design, 25. International Custom Designs, 26. Martha O’Hara Interiors, 27. Knickerbocker Group, 28. Pinterest, 29. Capitol Building, 30. Croma Design, 31. Garrison Hullinger Interior Design, 32. Old World Kitchens & Custom Cabinets, 33. Mark Brand Architecture, 34. Modern House Architects, 35. DKOR Interiors, 36. K & K Custom Cabinets LLC, 37. Tyrrell and Laing International, 38. Pearson Design Group, 39. James Patrick Walters, 40. Ownby Design, 41. Pinterest, 42. Peace Design, 43. Patrick Sutton Associates, 44. Garret Cord Werner Architects, 45. Tatum Brown Custom Homes, 46. W Design Interiors, 47. Swatt | Miers Architects, 48. Xstyles Bath + More, 49. Krannitz Gehl Architects, 50. Moger Mehrhof Architects, 51. Nella Designs, 52. Pinterest, 53. Paula Berg Design Associates, 54. Prestige Custom Building & Construction, 55. Tyner Construction Co, 56. Pinterest, 57. Sylvia Martin Photography, 58. Quezada Architecture, 59. Period Architecture Ltd, 60. RKD Architects, 61. Rozewski & Co Designers, 62. Platinum Series by Mark Molthan, 63. Vacation Home Builders
Soldati House was designed by architect Victor Vasilev as a specific request by the customer to create a functional and contemporary environment in a house built in the 90s in Carrara, Tuscany, Italy. The house three story dwelling had to accommodate the life of a family of four, without sacrificing the convenience offered by the world today. The idea comes from a clear choice: to create a space in which to unite under the leadership of geometry, material, light and functions, taking care of every detail, so that the final result is characterized by a visual unity.
Here is a description of the project from the architects: The house was built in the 1990ies, without design ambitions. The owners wanted the interior to look ‘Milanese’, i.e. ‘ultramodern’. I decided on a complete overhaul, appreciating the space potential – 4,704 square feet (530 square meters) on three floors. This is not a weekend retreat but a family house and the aim was to create a contemporary domestic environment functional in every aspect.
Travertine marble and Indonesian teak were chosen for the material palette. The design is based on the composition of simple square volumes. The custom-made furniture is integrated in the architecture of the house. A few ‘classical’ design pieces enrich the interior.
The final result is achieved by the interplay of space, materials, custom-made furniture and indirect lighting. It gives out the warm, white glow, which softens the interior.
The living area is focused on the ground floor. The rooms of the living, dining and kitchen flow into one another seamlessly.
The master bedroom, the children’s bedrooms and a guest bedroom are on the first floor. The low bench in the master bedroom serves as a visual link with the bathroom, thus avoiding distinctly divided spaces. The black washbasin is designed to hide the mixer taps.
The family wanted a spa area, so the basement is devoted to relaxation. Here you will find the area audio & video and wellness space. A sauna, a big bathtub for four and a massage area were constructed in the basement. A home cinema room with a folding screen was added.
Clients often live in fear of being ‘ forced ‘ to give up their way of life to be able to get into the ‘ temple of domestic architecture ‘. I believe that the success of the project lies in the fact that we have found functional and aesthetic solutions to all the needs that may last over time.
Photos: Adriano Pecchio Photography
Haus Wiesenhof is an alpine refuge designed by Gogl Architekten as a synergy of spatial openness and enclosed areas in St. Johann in Tirol, Austria. The client requested a getaway – a place of peace and contemplation with a strong relationship to the nature surrounding it. According to the design specifications, rebuilding or extending the house beyond the existing cubage was not permitted, which entailed a massive limitation for the design. Through the basic ideas of interlocking the inner rooms and the form design of an open and richly varied spatial structure, the architect conceptually compensated for the design restrictions and created a generous living and leisure space.
We took cautious consideration for the topological strengths of the site, with the Hinterkaisergebirge to the north, the Kitzbühler Horn to the south, the Loferer Steinbergen to the east as well as the surrounding farmhouse building structure. The house communicates with the dominant mountain range, with every view resembling a painting. The decision to utilize archaic materials was made quite consciously to quote the surrounding farmsteads. The client wanted an atmosphere that was light and airy, but also cozy.
Out of respect for the natural surroundings, native plants were used in the planning of the garden. Topological changes in the former agricultural spaces were carefully integrated into the existing environment.
Generous openings with no thresholds allow the indoors to merge with the outdoors. Even the safety railings on the big terrace consist of plant structures. The seasons themselves dictate whether it is more pleasant to spend time in the garden (which is intended as a part of the landscape) or indoors in front of the stove.
Attention was given to the origin of all materials used in this construction. The ecological consciousness of the planners and the client went hand-in-hand. Oak, iron, natural stone, linen and hemp fabric were the basic elements.
Most of the furniture was conceptualized individually, corresponding to the spatial requirements and the needs of the client.
Photos: Mario Webhofer
Sunset Residence is a private family home situated in a secluded cul-de-sac in the fashionable area of Bukit Timah in Singapore, designed by Topos Design Studio. The residence is a beautiful and understated piece of bespoke and holistic architectural design. The modest entrance facade gently invites you through into a stunning pool area which reveals the U-shaped plan of this 6,350 square foot (590 square meters) building. This form allows for seclusion as well as views of the pool area from virtually every room in the house as well as fantastic ventilation through full height sliding louver and glass doors. This is helped by the orientation of residence to make full use of the day and night prevailing breeze.
The simple no fuss architectural language of the house is further accentuated by a 4 tone color palette to not only highlight the form, but also to allow the client’s stunning pieces of furniture to take center stage. This unpretentious approach in keeping to the natural and simplistic setting of the built environment led to a refined and elegant feel to the spaces, worthy of the esteemed client.
The quality of light and the form on the interior spaces were key to the design which is evident from the generously proportioned lounge and the double height dining area of the first floor. These grand rooms offer fantastic spaces for the family to congregate and enjoy time together.
The second floor of the property is dedicated to the private realms of the users and a relaxing alternative lounge away from the main family area. A comprehensive aluminum louver system, across this floor, aids in sun shading, so as to minimize air-con usages well as to offer exclusive and spiritual privacy against the surrounding properties.
Some Materials and Finishes used for the Surfaces, Partitions, Floorings, Walls:
1. BiancoCarraraand Molton Brown Marble for Living, Dining, Dry Kitchen floor.
2. Bush hammered and flamed Kur Grey Granite for all outdoors and external walls.
3. Blue turquoise mosaic for the pool and Burmese Teak Timber flooring for all bedrooms and common corridors.
4. Calacatta Oro and Breccia Paradiso Marble for all the bathrooms. Various vinyl backed Essex Singapore Wall paper for all the bedrooms and common areas.
5. Duravit, Hansgrohe and GerebitSanitary Wares and system
6. Jung EIB Switch Systems
7. Ferro Aluminum Sun shading and Window System
8. Hunter Douglas Mechanical Sun shading Blinds
9. RIMADESIO Velaria Glass Sliding Partition Door System supplied By Vivo Systems Singapore
10. Ironmongeries by Dorma Systems andHewi180 Series (Door Handles)
Summarised Design Concept
1. Proportioned, Timeless, Tailored Elegance
Photos: Derek Swalwell