AR Design Studio just sent us their latest project, 4 Views, a private house situated in a prominent location overlooking the city of Winchester, United Kingdom and its beautiful surrounding countryside. This striking upside-down build contrasts with its conventional neighbors, displaying a flat over hanging roof, dark grey brick, cedar cladding and grey aluminum framed windows. In 2011 the architects were approached by a couple wishing to build a new house. They wanted a life experience to immerse themselves in, having recently lost a daughter; a project that would give them a positive focus and a fresh start for them and their family.
Taking responsibility for their brief very seriously, research into building a house that could help them move forward, heal and bring them happiness began. Through extensive research we found a wealth of information on the connection between good architecture and its positive effects on restoring health. We were given a ‘free hand’ with its design, around a wish for a garden within. The conceptual drive behind this house was the principle of the 3 N’s: Nature, Natural light and Natural air. The form of the replacement house is defined by four interlocking boxes, the negative space at their center forms a ‘Zen’ garden, with a single olive tree at its heart.
This simple layout became the foundation on which the principles of the 3N’s could be built, allowing them to be incorporated into all aspects of the design. A connection to nature has long been believed as good for one’s body and soul. This house connects with nature through three stunning, far reaching views of the South Downs. The long views inspiring the couple to look forward to the future, the courtyard giving space for inward private and reflective times. Subsequently, the house has become known as 4 Views.
The extensive glazing to walls, roof lights and open central garden allow natural light to flood the upper floor, giving a generous feeling of space. The skylights create an enchanting backdrop to the interior, the spaces constantly alive with light and shadow from passing clouds, providing a stimulating continual connection to the elements.
Large sliding panels of glass to the primary elevation and courtyard ensure natural ventilation and also a free flow of natural fresh air.
The courtyard, large balcony and huge covered patio are all designed to offer healthy outdoor living options regardless of weather.
The bedrooms and snug are intentionally darker, giving a cozier retreat downstairs. Views from here frame the garden, contrasting the extended views from the first floor and in turn emphasizing the ground floor as a private retreat for the family.
Photos: Martin Gardner
The Glass House is a modern renovation and extension designed by AR Design Studio in Winchester, England. The home was originally built by the Earl of Airlie in 1856 while he served as Camp Commandant at the nearby Peninsular Barracks military base and split into two more modestly sized dwellings in the 1950s. Since then, the servants’ quarters had fallen into a state of disrepair after the unfortunate passing of a sole elderly owner. It remained vacant for a number of years, until the long-time occupants of the Manor House sought to retire and move into the more manageable servants’ quarters which overlooked the surrounding grasslands and turn it into their dream home.
From the architect: It is not every day that a body is found buried on your building site, but on a summer’s morning in 2012 this is exactly what happened while builders were laying foundations for RIBA award-winning architects AR Design Studio’s latest project. By 6pm they had found another 2.
After the initial astonishment, the Police and later a team of Archaeologists were brought in who thankfully identified the remains as being of Roman origin. After a period of intense excavation, it was confirmed as a site of Archaeological importance when further evidence of Roman burials and defensive fortifications were uncovered, including the discovery of a rare Roman burial urn. Once the site was cleared of artefacts and the bodies taken to the local museum for research, work on the building could continue.
These ancient findings further added to the already rich historical context of the property situated in the town of Winchester, the old Roman capital of England. The project was to convert the original servants’ quarters of the large Manor House that overlooked the surrounding grasslands. It was built by the Earl of Airlie in 1856 while he served as Camp Commandant at the nearby Peninsular Barracks military base and split into two more modestly sized dwellings in the 1950s.
Since then, the servants’ quarters had fallen into a state of disrepair after the unfortunate passing of a sole elderly owner. It remained vacant for a number of years, until the long-time occupants of the Manor House sought to retire and move into the more manageable servants’ quarters and turn it into their dream home.
The owner’s love of glass fuelled their brief to construct a beautifully simple sculptural glass staircase and a contemporary glass extension, situated at the rear of the property in the space created by the ‘C’ shape of the building, which would open itself up to the garden.
The couple approached AR Design Studio Chartered Architects because of their experience in dealing with glass architecture and their interest in how this material can be used to create seamless relationships between inside and outside space, between the man-made and nature.
Hidden from view behind the buildings traditional facade, the finished extension is an elegant piece of modern contemporary glass architecture. It completely reinvents the feel and atmosphere of the previously dark and cramped servants’ quarters; all within the rich and poignant historical context of the site.
The concept was to provide a clean and light architectural intervention alongside the traditional shell of the building which would positively affect the feel and functionality of the property. The spaces are designed to accentuate a play between light and dark; contrasting from the bright and open communal spaces to the more subtle and secluded, almost cave-like retreat spaces in the old house.
The existing layout was clarified; vertical voids were cut through the house to unite the cellar, ground and first floors and redirect the flow of the house to naturally draw the user towards the new glass space at the heart of the home.
The strategic placement of the large roof light floods the entrance hall with sunlight that tracks through the double-height space with the time of day and the seasons.
This extremely light and spacious frameless glass extension houses the open-plan kitchen, living and dining areas. As the delicate structure reaches over to form the walls and roof of the extension, it creates a flexible inside/outside space allowing sunlight to flood through the home and filter down gradually, creating beautiful shards of light and shadow.
As a contrast to the extension, the formal lounge, study and dining room have a more sheltered and embracing nature. Upstairs, the Glass House has 4 large double bedrooms, each with an en-suite bathroom. The master suite has its own walk-in wardrobe and views overlooking the garden and the top of the glass extension below. All the essentials have been accounted for, in the form of utility and laundry rooms, study and WC that flank the glass box.
Timber ceramic tiling was used as an innovative alternative to traditional timber flooring because it does not discolour in the weather and is a perfect surface to compliment the underfloor heating throughout. This allowed for a seamless floor finish running from the inside to the outside onto the cantilevered patio.
The rest of the house is finished to a minimal and clean appearance to allow the functional glass structures to stand out as exquisite pieces of sculptural art in their own right.
Whilst still retaining a subtle street appearance, the finished property now renamed Clarkes, is completely transformed from its previous gloomy and decrepit nature. The modern renovation and extension creates a light, airy and open living environment bursting with traditional values, contemporary style and innovative design.
Photos: Martin Gardner
Cat Hill Barn is nestled in the rolling hills of Yorkshire, an historic county of Northern England, constructed in the late 16th century as a beautiful grade II listed barn. Designed by Liverpool-based Snook Architects, the 3,810 square foot (354 square meters) home originally had some problems with the local planning office, yet won permission on appeal, with the provision of a restrained aesthetic of the scheme which deliberately avoided being too domestic in appearance. The architects created a flowing open plan interior that avoided compartmentalization and opened up to reveal the splendor and scale of the original barn and its trusses. Snook completed the scheme in 2012 and subsequently received two nominations in the 2013 RIBA awards in the regional category and small projects. Snook won in both categories.
The main living spaces read as one generous volume set off by the new pegged oak trusses and stone fireplace. This space alludes to an upper floor by a floating glass gallery that neatly separates the main bedroom from the children’s bedrooms.
The budget was extremely tight but the keenness of a local contractor and the proximity of the joinery workshop all helped to keep costs down. Avoiding the tendency to planner-twee that bedevils so many barn conversions, this simple scheme builds on the lofty agricultural aesthetic and injects it with all the intimacy and fun of a good domestic project.
Photos: Andy Haslam
One Hyde Park is a luxury residential complex with one of the most exclusive addresses in the world, created by award-winning architecture firm Rogers Stirk Harbour + Partners, in London. One Hyde Park is an important 21st century addition to London’s architectural landscape — a landmark building that is iconic in form, celebratory in spirit and respectful to its environment. The building has been designed in four pavilions to create maximum light permeability throughout each apartment. The angled form of the architecture ensures breathtaking views from every internal space, without having to compromise on privacy or security.
The building is comprised of 86 apartments and duplexes – including four penthouses – and three retail units at ground-floor level fronting onto Knightsbridge. Additional facilities for residents include a private cinema, private wine-tasting facility, bullet proof windows, purified air systems, “panic rooms”, 21 meters swimming pool, a squash court, saunas, a gym, a golf simulator, a wine cellar, room service and 60 trained staff on call 24 hours a day, and a business suite and meeting rooms. Renowned lighting artist, James Turrell has created a unified lighting concept that interacts with the development’s architecture. It includes perimeter lighting for the five glass stair and lift structures and a colorful light display (the LEDs are a mix of red, green, blue and white lamps that, when combined, can render every possible color in the spectrum).
Candy & Candy have exclusively designed all the communal areas including the spa and recreation facilities, the grand double-height reception space, Park Library and Serpentine Suite. Each apartment is finished to their exacting standards and they have carefully designed and assigned to each apartment either of the two exclusively designed base build palettes, light or dark. Each palette provides the perfect foundation on which residents can imprint their own interior design personality with the help of Candy & Candy’s design team if they so desire.
The apartments also include provisional writing for audio visual systems and visual systems and programmed lighting controls which will enable residents to select their preferred suppliers for all their personal audio visual requirements.
The vision of Candy & Candy is to create the most exquisite interiors for the most exclusive address in the world. Each apartment has been designed to reveal the beautiful and carefully designed proportions and every detail has been considered to ensure the experience of living at One Hyde Park is unsurpassed.
This early Victorian mid-terraced house lies on a peaceful residential street close to very popular Westbourne Grove in west London, England. A lengthy collaboration between the owner and Gianni Botsford Architects has resulted in a bachelor playground designed to indulge and please at every turn. This masterpiece of design and style is more or less traditional in layout but has some quite fabulous contemporary additions and imaginative finishes, notably from Jimmie Martin, Tom Dixon and Abigail Ahern. The full-length drawing room is on the raised ground floor, as one would expect, but to the rear a bold gallery drops down into the kitchen/dining room below, linking the two spaces.
Passing the rear roof deck, the surprises continue, and include a fully equipped cinema room. The Bulthaup kitchen (using Gaggenau and Sub Zero appliances) is genius in design, while the low visual impact blends perfectly with the cozy rough brick floors, natural surface finishes and Eames furniture. At the rear, a bank of rotating glass panels provides views of a terraced garden and a lush-green living wall. The brilliant primary bedroom suite on the upper floors, double in height, offers complete sanctuary. A central spiral staircase leads to a mezzanine office and gallery, and from here a bridge takes you to a suntrap roof terrace via an enormous sliding glass panel. Elsewhere are two double bedrooms, a guest bathroom and a utility room with Miele appliances.
A small rear garden has been reinvigorated with a green living wall and center pivot frameless glass doors from the new kitchen and dining area.
Particular emphasis has been made on creating different atmospheres for each function throughout the house.
Listed for sale at $9,636,000, from here.
This modern Loft Space in Camden has been transformed into a bright and dynamic living-working space by London based studio Craft Design. Originally used as an open plan office space, the challenge was to convert the 602 square foot (56 square meters) property into a bespoke and innovative environment that efficiently and creatively responds to the demands of living in London. In response to the brief, the idea was to maximize the sense of space as well as keeping a simple and efficient layout. The solution successfully achieved this with the introduction of a single volume located central to the loft where all the services are accommodated. Detached from the facades and ceilings this element has divided the open plan into several spaces for different uses such as Kitchen-Dinning, Living Room, Storage, Bathroom and a Mezzanine for the sleeping and working area.
The 4.5 m height party wall and roof eaves have been fully used with shelves and storage, which serve the whole space. The stair to access the mezzanine level was cleverly integrated into this single piece of furniture. The rest was about keeping a simple palette in terms of materials and colors to allow the owner collection of objects, art and books give the wall an authentic personality to the space.
Photos: Armando Elias
We just received images of the latest project by AR Design Studio, The Medic’s House, which is an incredible modern addition of a 1950s three bedroom house situated in Winchester, United Kingdom. The architects, Andy Ramus & Laurent Metrich, were commissioned to update the home by two doctors who are based in Winchester to meet the needs of their growing family. The brief required that the architects add two additional bedrooms to the upstairs and create a spacious open plan family space with plenty of light, views and access to the beautiful garden on the lower level.
From the architects: AR Design Studio’s solution was to create a large charcoal grey living box at ground level with a full height glazed opening elevation to the garden. A timber clad sleeping pod is perched above at first floor level providing the additional bedrooms.
The fenestration was resolved as a series of verticals that celebrate the depth of the walls with a combination of recessed and flush frameless windows. The overall composition was influenced by the ancient Greek theory of the ‘Golden Section’ in order to provide a well-balanced and proportioned rear elevation.
At ground floor level the extension contains a utility, WC, kitchen, dining room and lounge area, fitted with 3 large eco-friendly sliding glass panels creating an uninterrupted view of the garden. The flush threshold and continuous floor surface enhance this connection with the garden by allowing the internal space to flow seamlessly out into it on warmer days.
The walls are constructed from super insulated block and oversized insulated cavities ensuring a very thermally efficient envelope. Large opaque glass panels to the sides allow etch light to enter deep into the plan of the space. The structure is hidden in strategically placed fins that suggest living zones within the open-plan space.
Upstairs, the western red cedar clad addition consists of a generous master suite with a separate dressing area and one other additional bedroom. This upper box is also fabricated in timber, allowing for a light weight structure that reduces the need for unsightly columns beneath. The construction contains over 250mm of insulation which AR felt was important at the upper level. This approach to construction was also carried through into the over insulated single-ply roof.
Photos: Martin Gardner
Loughloughan Barn is a stunning project that has been designed by McGarry Moon Architects, situated in Broughshane, Northern Ireland, UK. This unassuming home is a unique configuration of skillfully contained views from the interior the manipulation of natural light combined with fluid, informal spaces allowing us to create architecture that has some dramatic moments but does not overly dominate the character of the existing stone barn. The house is surprising which engages people and allows the dwelling a unique character without having to resort to reproducing a replica of the past.
The original stone structure, the splendid views of ‘Slemish’ and the desire for comfortable understated interiors were the principles that focused us as architects. The preservation and consolidation of the stone structure was fundamental in achieving an architecture where the old and new complemented each other. Thus the residence was designed by fusing new technologies with older building techniques whilst incorporating sustainability ideals in order to create a rural architecture for the 21st century, rather than simply remodeling or recreating the methods and manners of the past.
Approached from the north west this 1,184 square foot (110 square meters) dwelling has a restrained appearance, with smooth texture of zink contrasts and interacts with the warmth of the existing stone walls. The dwelling retains the integrity of the existing barn whilst hinting to the dynamic design within.
The new building uses the foundations and outer walls of the old barn, but new metal framework is inserted in the interior to create the upper ground floor. All original openings are used without alteration in the lower ground floor. The living space cantilevers out of existing stone barn and has an altogether different all be it rural architectural language.
Interior architecture firm TG-Studio has transformed this three bedroom penthouse located in England’s famed St Pancras Chambers. The apartment is one of three penthouses in the 52 unit development by the Manhattan loft corporation. It covers the top three floors of the west tower of this famous London landmark. The client hired TG studio to transform the unit from the standard developer spec into a personal and luxurious home.
As the property is of highest public interest and the interiors listed by English Heritage as very significant, the floor plan had to be broadly maintained but all staircases were replaced. The Studio and client worked closely together removing all bathrooms, floor finishes, built in wardrobes and the kitchen. The master bedroom, which is located on the top floor, is now reached through a new staircase that turns around an oak clad storage room reached off the main entrance hall. The floor area on this level was enlarged and separated into a walk in wardrobe, finished in oak and sheep leather and personalized to the client’s needs. The master bedroom space is open plan but can be closed to the triple height living room by an electrical operated curtain.
The lower open floor plan is laid out as a relaxed kitchen zone, dining area and TV watching area. The TV area is located opposite the kitchen and balances in its elevation the open plan kitchen. The joinery accommodates the AV equipment and a visible library and is kept very white with arrabascato stone as a vertical feature behind the TV. The dining table is from Poliform as are the chairs; the sofa is from zanotti, the rug from the rug company.
The middle and lower floor (floor 4 & 5 of the building) are occupied by two levels of entertaining. A new staircase has been designed connecting both levels, featuring oak veneer, plain glass and wooden stringers painted in off white. The staircase consists of a bridge that connects to a library which is cantilevering the main part of the staircase. This library unit is the feature of the staircase and also forms the balustrade to one side. It offers storage for books, statues and other artifacts collected by the owner.
The upper floor measures approximately 800 square feet and accommodates a very comfortable seating area and a zone for the pool table, a collector’s item owned by the client. The living room features furniture from Poltrona frau, knoll and Lema.
The penthouse gives access to two bedrooms with a dressing area and en-suite each a secondary entrance to the apartment and a guest WC and storage. The two en-suite bathrooms are located in two gothic towers of the building which gives them great views of the surrounding area and a triple ceiling height. They have been finished in Arrabascato marble and each feature a low hanging chandelier to play with the unusual ceiling height.
The bathroom features an extra-large walk in shower with a flush TV and a bespoke double sink unit finished in the stone, mirror and the textile oak present throughout the Penthouse, which enhances the earthy and organic feel of this sanctuary.
The Studio selected and furnished the entire penthouse and a meridiani bed in blue velvet was chosen in this bedroom flanked by vividly colored lacquered bedside tables from Lema. The master en-suite has been enlarged too and now features a Portuguese travertine stone which has a cave like quality.
Astley Castle originally served as the royal family’s fortified manor for three generations before being turned into a hotel in World War 2 in Nuneaton, Warwickshire, United Kingdom. After years of abandon, it became a ruined curiosity for those who knew of its location, serving as an unofficial impromptu venue for a range of activities until The Landmark Trust – a building preservation charity – proposed to restore the structure. They hosted a competition inviting architects to submit their ideas for the renovation of the residence and accompanying mote, entry gateway, curtain walls, lake, church, and vestiges of Elizabethan pleasure gardens. London-based Witherford Watson Mann Architects were chosen to carry out the project, breathing a new life into the ancient construction. The design tackled big questions regarding renovations, especially given a project of this scale: what will the relationship be between the old and new, and how can the new structure fortify the collapsing edifice?
The design strategy aimed to reoccupy the old residence, to re-institute the spaces as they had historically been used, retaining as much of the original feel of the space as possible. Brick became the material of choice for the intervention as it matched the idea of the first construction but retained a visually evident difference. it also allowed the new construction to transition into the old masonry elements following the uneven joints created by the dilapidated walls. Construction crew worked hand in hand with archaeologists to excavate the site in preparation for the insertion of new materials. Large concrete lintels and other larger structural members had to be craned in from outside the mote, which also complicated the construction process. Cintec ties were used to strengthen existing walls without adding any visible structure with a process that includes drilling holes into the partitions and filling them with a steel rod and expanding cementitious grout.
The site is owned by The Landmark Trust and its holiday accommodation can be booked at a rate of $1,015.00, for four nights sleeping up to eight people.
Photos: Courtesy of The Landmark Trust