Serenity House by DBALP located in Phuket, Thailand | The Hardt
Serenity House by DBALP located in Phuket, Thailand.“The Serenity House is a three-story private residence in Phuket. It is a second home for a small family: husband, wife, two children and two housemaids. The prime requirement from the owner is a full panoramic view of the sea and the integration of nature. The programme consists of 4 bedrooms with bathroom, living room, dining room, kitchen, garage for three cars and the infinity swimming pool. The project is perched on the slope of the mountain in Phuket. Since the site is located in a village, there are planning restrictions on the individual design by the local developer. Therefore, the sloping site becomes a point of departure for the concept. But how does the topography of the mountain turn into the architecture? To answer this question, an interesting technique that can open up the possibility of becoming architecture is to ‘graph topology’ from the site. In this way, the graph is drawn to respond to the slope of the site. Such a technique on the slope analysis creates nine varieties of topological graphs as an alternative. This project demonstrates a topological graph as a technique in order to design the condition, rather than condition the design. After this process, the ‘topological graph’ is interpreted as a sequence of abstract spaces and the uses. Therefore, the eight graphs are eliminated from the design process since only one graph can meet certain functional criteria and all requirements. The design develops into mass model study only insofar as it shows a sequence of space and investigates the differences of level on the sloping site.
In regards to the client’s requirements, there are two priorities: the full panoramic view of the sea and the integration of nature. This raises the question to us: What is the integration of nature in this project? And how to bring it into the design? We propose that the notion of experience should be brought into the design. According to the Oxford English Dictionary, the word ‘experience’ means an event or occurrence that leaves an impression on someone. The integration of nature is, therefore, a relationship between the notion of experience with the nature and the sequence of abstract spaces and the uses. In other words, this is a link between landscape and architecture. Undoubtedly, the full panoramic view of the sea is a part of experiences – seeing an event or a scene over the sea. However, another sign of experience to achieve integration of nature is a ‘realness’ of material. In such a way, all materials in this house represent the beauty of natural texture. Apart from the study of topological graphs, it is important to translate these two requirements from the client into the design and this is why our client is happy with the Serenity House. For example, if one visits the house, there is a sequence of space that offers a variety of experience. To begin with, the visitor arrives at the outdoor entrance court as a big space. After that, he or she will walk through a tremendous wooden door and pass through the small corridor, but then again, walk across the entrance bridge, where the inner narrow court with fountain, waterfall and fishpond is situated, to the living area of the house. This experience in each space of a sequence would somehow be able to leave an impression on his or her.”
Aesthetically and Geographically related Projects:
Located in Chom View Khao Yai Village, Pak Chong, Nakhon Ratchasima, Thailand, Yellow Submarine Coffee Tank (2015) by Secondfloor Architects | The Hardt
Located in Chom View Khao Yai Village, Pak Chong, Nakhon Ratchasima, Thailand, Yellow Submarine Coffee Tank (2015) by Secondfloor Architects. The project located in one of the country’s most visited weekend destinations. This blossoming vacation town is occupied mainly by two types of architecture; the ones predominated with large openings and access to hillside view, and those with the replicated aesthetics of Western architecture. But what Yellow Submarine Coffee Tank proposes is something different. After introducing the design team the1,600 – square meter land of Indian Mahogany plantation, the owner expresses the desire of incorporating architecture to create new values for the land for future expansion. From the first encounter, the site reveals the specific physical conditions of the planted forest from its gentle slope to the very unique ambiance that has the potential to become one the area’s most prominent place. And architecture is going to help emphasize and understand these elements.
A series of 3-meter-high walls enclose the 300-square meter area to underline the different scale of the structure and the vast landscape it locates in while leading users’ focus to what goes on inside. The 38-meter length of the dark wall situating on the gentle slope accentuates the 1.6-meter difference of the site’s steepness. To access the coffee tank from the parking space, visitors are led to follow the walkway locating in parallel with the building as they consider the coexistence of architecture and nature. Only one-third of the coffee house’s space is roofed with an air-conditioned room being one half of the sheltered area. Such program grants the opportunities for users to be immersed into natural surrounds that change through seasons.
The functional space is divided into three sections: 1) the entrance that introduces the vast and emptiness 2) the part where architecture functions similarly to a tree and 3) the area under the tree canopy. The architecture is constructed from materials with different shades of black to create an environment where certain elements become present through the processes of absorption and reflection. Physical interactions of materials can be seen in various forms and effects, from the brickwork that absorbs moisture, the sounds of footsteps on the graveled ground, the thick walls that help to block noises, the shimmering reflected light on the exposed aggregate walls coated with Chinese ink, to the reflection of glossy tiles. Through the collective visibility of these elements, the ‘blackness’ speaks with its own language.
While the realized architectural form seems like quite a contrast to nature, it possesses a strong connection with the site and the surroundings. The enclosed space allows users to not only see but contemplate the things they might have overlooked, from simple human interactions to the humble magnificence of nature. Ambiance becomes one of the key ingredients of the architecture, and meaningfully, space is formed, serving its own role and presence as a memorable architectural space while adding a new awareness to people’s perception of and attitude towards architecture.
PA House (2017) by IDIN Architects located in Thailand | The Hardt
PA House (2017) by IDIN Architects located in Thailand. The private house was designed for a small and new settled family. There are 3 bedrooms including one master bedroom and two bedrooms reserving for guest and their child in the future. Not only the bedrooms but there are also 2 more main requirements from the owner which are a great common area for living and dining, where the owners always get together with their friends as the new generation’s lifestyle does, and the privacy, the owner’s most important issue, from the unpleasant surroundings. While the house needs privacy, it still has to be roomy and clear at the same time.
Therefore, the concept design begins with studying the surrounding buildings about their height to outside-in and inside-out view of the house, to fit each function to the site appropriately. In the other hand, the surrounding buildings are not only the conditions but also the assistance to help the architects plan the layout and zoning of this house. In order to achieve such requirements, the wall planes are created for screening out the outside-in view, opening the inside-out view and creating an internal space at the same time. The main area of the house is the common area where owners can have a dinner and take a 180-degree view of the green area through the swimming pool. Each wall plane is intentionally designed to float and locate around the house to define the house’s view and shade out the sunlight getting into the area simultaneously.
ReGEN House (2017) by EKAR located in Khwaeng Bang Bumru, Thailand | The Hardt
ReGEN House (2017) by EKAR located in Khwaeng Bang Bumru, Thailand. After living with his parents until the time he has his own family, our client moved out to his own house located opposite his parents’. The very first intention of our client was to renovate the existing house to be suitable for his first-born daughter – Meena. However, after the completion of architectural drawing, our client changed his mind. From his experience, it is not pleasing when it comes to living apart from his parents. Being a new parent makes our client become truly thinking about his daughter and her future. Therefore, he bought another land opposite his house and next to his parent’s house, with an effort to create a place where he can live with his child Meena till the time when she has her own family.
Long before Bangkok established, Thai people live in a big family which consists of grandparents, father, mother, and children (and sometimes including uncle and aunt). The way of Thai’s life has influenced on the architectural design of Thailand. A traditional Thai house, in general, is composed of a variety of small detached-houses in which each small family lives, and a patio in a middle of the houses, where connects each family together. The house sits on poles which creates a high open space under the house, allowing good wind flow to pass through and lowering the temperature inside. In addition, protecting the dwellers from flood and wild animals. Therefore, this ground floor is mainly for parking and storage. While the residential area is on the first floor of the house where life starts. The attempt is to enhance living quality as well as the family relationship; meanwhile, individuals still have their own private space.
Nonetheless, the modern context is full of complexity creating complication in Thai people’s life. Land prices soar in capital forcing people to live apart from their family. Modern people tend to move into micro-apartments nearby their workplaces or too small detached-houses outside the city where the land prices are still affordable. The question is whether or not it is possible that we could create a house which brings back the comfort of traditional Thai houses to the modern context. The land is located on the corner of a road, and next to the house of client’s parents where he grew up. With an area of 640 square meters, the architect embraces the concept of traditional Thai architecture to the planning to maximize this limited area. By creating L-shape building and lifting all residential spaces to the upper floors; leaving ground floor free for storage and parking area of ten cars. The wall between the parents’ house and the new one is eliminated and filled with a big new garden along the existing garden of parents’ house to create consistency of space.
Regarding client’s wish, the architects divided the floor planning of four-story house. The second floor is meant for the client’s family, while the third floor is for his daughter’s future family. Hence, in order to gather everyone in the family (and his daughter’s future family) together, the first floor is a focal point. On this floor, there are an entertainment room and a grand patio which become the common area for the client’s family (and also the future family). Furthermore, this floor is inspired by a traditional ground level in which natural elements are closely surrounded. Ranging from the swimming pool on the same floor which reflects a riverside sensation to the elevated yard across the swimming pool. The gap between the swimming pool and the elevated yard allows a tree from the ground floor to grow through. Also, allowing sunlight to stream in a glass pavilion (gardening pavilion) underneath. On the grand patio, users’ eyesight will be led to the swimming pool, the elevated yard, the top of the tree (grew on the ground floor), the existing garden of parents’ house, and to the parents’ house, respectively.
The intention is to make our client feel close to their parents. As well as to lay down watching Meena running around on this grand patio, like on a real ground. East side of the land is opposite the eight-story economic apartment. Therefore, the architects conceal the house on this side, in order to block the unpleasant view as well as to protect the residents from prying eyes, by providing windows or voids at the minimum number. Back to the ground floor, there is a main entrance on the east side which is made of solid wood. While on the first floor, on the same side, there are floor-to-ceiling wooden-grill window pivots which can be opened to allows ventilation and can be closed when privacy is in need. In terms of material selection, each floor of the ReGEN House features different materials, such as wood, stone-texture coated wall, and stone-like tiles. This material combination creates a uniqueness to the facade which still fits into the surrounding context.
YAK01 (2013) by AA-D located in Bangkok, Thailand | The Hardt
YAK01 is a new modernly designed house located on Yen Akat Road, Bangkok, Thailand. The house is specifically designed for a small modern family. It is composed of a 560 sq.m private land and 500 sq. m usable internal space. Even though the usable space of the land is limited, the client wanted a modern house with sun shades and rain protection as well as a large greenery area to enjoy. After numerous hours of design planning and meetings, the architect proposed cantilevering practically half of the house over the ground floor area. This would liberate more space in the garden while following the regulations. The house is designed in L shape to enhance the usable space and green area. One side of the wall of the house is designed to close to an adjacent plot of land to maximize the green space. The bathrooms, service areas, storages, and staircases are designed as buffer zones to absorb the heat and provide more privacy for the main private space on the north. Most of the glass walls are also in the north of the house in order to receive natural sunlight since the northern sunlight is the least intense in Thailand. In addition, 50 percent of the land is an open space for gardening that can be visible from every angle. The swimming pool is positioned in parallel with the building to draw cool air into the house. The architect’s main concerns are to keep the building cool during daytime and provide cross-ventilation from opposing windows for every room. The layout not only satisfies the client’s need but also provides a natural ventilation and generous outdoor area compared with that of a small plot with similar surrounding properties.
The ground floor is arranged as a Thai traditional house design with a central courtyard that functions as a feature foyer and distributor before accessing to the main living space. A staircase enclosed in a glass box is floating over this underlying front garden as a main feature for the entrance. The main living space is located in the center of the floating pavilion where the family can enjoy the outdoor garden and swimming pool. The living space directly connects to the terrace, the garden and the swimming pool with double -height folding windows that facilitate the fusion of spaces. The approach of situating a swimming pool in the back of the house produces a space that is diverse and suitable for various activities. The master bedroom upstairs is entirely cantilevered over the whole length of front foyer. It is designed in a cubic shape to create feature architectural element. The design does not only enhance the aesthetic element but also provide shading to the residence in the same fashion as a traditional Thai house. To incorporate a modern feeling to the house design, the architect installed customized Silver Aluminum Extrusion Strip vertically on the wall of the master bedroom and master bathroom. The strips make the house look like a silver box floating on a black granite sheet below. These Aluminum strips are also designed for air buffer insulation to cool down the main bedroom space. The other two bedrooms are located on another side of the house by extending on top of the swimming pool on a cantilevered concrete slab enclosed by a big glass wall with black aluminum cladding.
Ratchada 18 Residence (2017) AOMO located in Huai Khwang, Thailand | The Hardt
Ratchada 18 Residence (2017) AOMO located in Huai Khwang, Thailand. This private residence is an addition to the family property having an existing 1-story house. The new house is placed to give each other enough privacy and flexibility to expand. The house is for a young newly-married couple in their late 20’s. Modern lifestyle and social life of the owner is driving the functions and the architecture of the house. This house is also an experiment of architectural expression through detailed design between anti-gravity and levitating concept. It is a juxtaposition concept that we would like to express to make the house more interesting. As a result of Feng Shui master devices, A 6.5m cantilevered roof (with gutters), detailed as thin as possible, is flying over to cover the entire main stairs as suggested by Feng Shui master, opposing to a large solid masonry box of master bedroom, levitating above a rock garden since we need to raise this section up from the rest of the house for Feng Shui reason.
With a constrained budget, most of the housing material is inexpensive and very simple such as cement board panel, painted wall, and polished concrete. The detailed design is the integrity of the house with elaborated craftsmanship and thoughts, such as grooved PVC lines on masonry walls, alignments of materials or patterns used inside and outside. All the details and efforts make the house unique and powerful on its own.
Flower Cage House (2017) by Anonym located in Bangkok, Thailand | The Hardt
Flower Cage House (2017) by Anonym located in Bangkok, Thailand. “Flower cage house” is a former housing estate size 60 sq.wa with an internal area of 300 sq.m. The owner wants to renovate the house that was over 10 years to provide space that suits the needs to its full capacity. From home survey, architects have proposed to adjust the interior space, bring in natural light and add the multipurpose area over the original garage. Ground floor, at the main living area we smashing most of the solid wall and introduce steel frame glazing panels. Extend the extra space behind the house to meet the demands of increased usage and pull natural light into the house. Because it locates on the north side so we only bring the light but not the heat and with extra windows, they enhance better ventilation. The main entrance has been adjusted to the pace to walk home and make it more interesting.
The garage area is improved by removing the old pole structure. Then rebuild new steel structure building over to have a multi-purpose area on the 2nd floor, which can be connected to master bedroom. Underneath, the area has been refreshed by creating fish ponds. The iron stairs above the pond lead to the multi-purpose area, act as the area’s features. The upstairs interior is collapsed and transformed into a penthouse. This floor is truly a private residence, consisting of a master bedroom, living area, dressing room and connecting bathroom. The new building represents the owner character who is strong, energetic, yet gentle and sensitive at the same time. It is reinforced with aggressive steel structure but it still feels light. Increase the tenderness with the olive tree pots that are specifically designed by ceramic artists, the symbol of freedom placed between the space of the entire frame of 102 trees to enhance the uniqueness of this house.