Thong House (2014) by NISHIZAWA ARCHITECTS located in District 7, Vietnam | The Hardt
Thong House (2014) by NISHIZAWA ARCHITECTS located in District 7, Vietnam. The architecture takes advantage of two fronts, east, and south. On one side which is also the main elevation, is to the sun, the other has a magnificent view of the public park of the ward. Into a consistent dialogue with the next-door landscape, large openings in the southern side are proposed to enjoy the spectacular scenery of enormous plantings from the parks and witness the seasonally qualitative change throughout the years. The concept of geometry, while the volumes are mostly covered by wooden louver to absorb an amount of the sun heat before coming inside the house, the rotating door system covering the second-floor void, becomes the gate between the outside and inside of the house. The perceived quality of life in buildings should come from the geometry and how that geometry connects to human beings”. It was the initial thought we had when being offered to design a row house in Phu My Hung, a new urban development area in the Southern Saigon. This project could be considered as another attempt to find a contemporary living manner in row house typology. The brief was to get rid of the way of living we used to have in common townhouse, where the staircase in the center along with the corridor to access spaces covered by four walls which isolate people inside his own world. The client is a nuclear family, consisted of the parents and two kids with the explicit wish to have a home fulfilled with natural elements while being able to improve the spiritual connection between each family member.
Therefore, in a general view, the house looks like a composition of cubes as the private rooms while the spaces created under the shifting volumes will become the public areas for the family. The bold section plan which collateralized circulation, privacy, and activities-control, could be used to decide the function in each void and volumes. Continuously, a circulation as a silk ribbon is consequently created to connect all spaces together and tighten the relationship of spaces. From the main entrance, a narrow covered passageway introduces people to a 5-meter-height living space with the rotating door system at the end of the house. This system would be opened to the backyard garden and instantly fulfilled by wind provided through the tunnel. The living space and the dining area both expands vertically, through a double height, which helps to harmonize the public spaces inside the house with the outdoor impression. Along the straight flight steel staircase, some floating private volumes such as the library, space for the guest, and children space could gradually be seen. The master bedroom with the private common space in the fourth floor, are connected by a stone pavement that overcomes the garden which has been landscaped with indigenous plant and the top light above. The other utilities are arranged to be on the top floor. The rooftop garden provides outdoor space for the family to enjoy the nightlife in this new urban area. From the beginning till the end, the staircase – as the spine of the house lets us involve in a non-stop adventure to discover different places throughout the house.
We also have the practice that speculated on the idea to imitate the leaf-pattern and operate it as a decorative but still functional element. The outdoor wooden panels, which are externally arranged in a checkerboard pattern to express the main concept of stacking and shifting volumes, become fruitful with the leaf-pattern carved in and through, one by one. On the other hand, the internal louvers can be rotated so as to adjust upon the sunlight. The exposed concrete floor become more interesting with the “carpet” made with the leaf-pattern terrazzo. Moreover, the furniture itself is another way to increase the variety of pattern in interior design. The brutal feeling, with this meticulous detail, could somehow strongly strike the eye in an aesthetic sense. This architecture offers an interpretation of a fresh new lifestyle for young families in the modern tropical city. In another way, it could be considered as the cross point of modern and natural life which can be perfectly compatible with each other.
Casa La Quinta by Pérez Palacios and Alfonso de la Concha Roja + DCPP located in the Mexican town of San Miguel de Allende, Guanajuato | The Hardt
Casa La Quinta by Pérez Palacios and Alfonso de la Concha Roja + DCPP located in the Mexican town of San Miguel de Allende, Guanajuato. Casa La Quinta is a weekend house located in the town of San Miguel de Allende, Guanajuato. After visiting the site and considering the requirements of the program, the conclusion was to respect the identity of the place, built context and the importance of the height of the neighboring preexistent walls. Having a scheme that works inwards all the restrictions and having no nearby views to the landscape, 3 void spaces were proposed in the plan in the form of patios, each one with different character, use, and program. These voids give the project its character, producing a different perception of scale to the user, a high contrast of light and shadows, spaces of silence and rest.
Located in Ho Chi Minh City, Ho Chi Minh, Vietnam, Vegan House (2014) by Block Architects | The Hardt
Located in Ho Chi Minh City, Ho Chi Minh, Vietnam, Vegan House (2014) by Block Architects. This house was in an old terrace next to an apartment built in 1965. The owner works in travel and tourism, he once rented the house and planned to renovate it into a cultural place. It is on this spot that people meet up, share and cook Vietnamese traditional food, especially vegan one. They may also stay in during their time in Vietnam. The owner had hoarded up all the abandoned old things from his friends before brought about the project. They were every kind of furniture such as table, chair, wardrobe, window, and lampshade. With a tight budget, the architect wanted to exploit these old things with available ones and new ones to create a fresher place which still keeps traditional values of the former house. The old windows were used as the main material to create a distinctive appearance. These windows have been used in Vietnam for a long time because of its ventilation. They are now rearranged into a new facade with different colors and cover the old facade, wrap it up to the rooftop and create a special attraction, as well as harmonizing with the ancientness of entire area. Some open windows on the roof provide the trees beneath with space and natural light. This symbolizes growth, hopes for the future and goodness from traditional bedrock.
These windows also turn up inside the house as light partitions, separate and decorate space. On the ground floor, there are long curved kitchen cupboards go through the house. The big kitchen at the front is where people cook, talk and enjoy their cooking together in a dining room behind. Garden and an old staircase to the first floor are among these spaces. On the first floor, there is a bedroom in the front and a place to relax or work. A new steel staircase was built beside the atrium to the second floor, which used to be an unused roof. A bedroom was additionally made of old available steel sheeting, which lies beneath the roof system a short distance to prevent the heat from affecting inside. From this room to the front, there is a garden for drinking tea and looking at the night sky through lit in the window. Two toilets were also designed for these bedrooms. A small atrium was placed at the end for cross-room ventilation, it also provides beneath toilets with natural light. The material of the walls and floors was preserved. Unrefined cement surfaces, jalousie windows and bamboo wattle on the ceiling create both a modern and ancient place and revive Vietnamese architecture in the ’60s and ’70s The architect aspired to create a new place for newcomers from many different cultures. On the basis of rearranging old things in a new way, both the old things and the new ones can exist together and support each other. As time goes by, people here.
Town House in Antwerp by Sculp[IT] located in Antwerp, Belgium | The Hardt
Town House in Antwerp by Sculp[IT] located in Antwerp, Belgium. A townhouse ready for the next century. The façade keeps its historical function and bourgeois radiance, neatly in line. The contrast with the rear is ample. All incorrect additions are replaced by a unit of space and light. Daylight and contact with the garden are introduced. The simple, contemporary glass rear has the world’s largest pivoting window – 10 feet (3 meters) wide by 20 feet (6 meters) high – and makes this house ready for the future.
Clients wanted to have that connection and a more modern approach in connection with the old details. We broke down the rear part of the building to make this connection on the same level, and give the house a nice view of the garden from the different floors. We wanted to make also a connection with the different floors. This happened to wit a triplex in the new built rear extension. New Groundfloor: cooking and informal eating. (and storage places and garage) First floor: old part: dining and sitting (also with a view to the garden): new part: a suspended office. Second, third and fourth: 2 big rooms with bathroom each floor.
Polished concrete inside and the outside terrace on the same level. Walls: masonry with painted. Window profiles: ODS Jansen Extra laser-cut and tailormade with insulated glass from Saint Gobain. (glass 1.5 ton each slab). Each window (with frame) 2 tons. Dimensions: 3x6m and 6x3m above. Concept window: same form: T shaped as an old standard window. Kitchen: table tops also in concrete. The island is movable to the terrace. The ideal bbq house. In the old front part, we renovated the existing floors and architectural details. The new bathrooms are in the old style with a modern approach. But we kept the old lavabo’s that were available in the house. The new bathrooms are in between the two big bedrooms with double doors ‘en enfilade’ (a classical term for doors of different rooms on one view ax). So we didn’t do a lot, but what we did has giant repercussions to the way of living in that house.
MM House (2014-2016) by Nicolas Schuybroek Architects located in Mexico City, Mexico | The Hardt
MM House (2014-2016) by Nicolas Schuybroek Architects located in Mexico City, Mexico. This unusual, brutalist house from the early 1970’s, located in Chapultepec, the green and upscale neighborhood of Mexico City—well-known for its embassies and secluded homes—had been left in a total stay of decay over the past few years. The 4 stories high volume is an anomaly for this part of Mexico City, due to it’s height and the fact it doesn’t have a garden, which was precisely the three reasons why our client bought it: it would not only avoid the maintenance of the garden, but it would offer the possibility to explore different interior experiences on each floor and to enjoy breathtaking view from the rooftop terrace. Architecturally, we analyzed the client’s wishes floor by floor and completely re-structured the volumes accordingly. Additions, like the wide triangular shaped concrete canopy, the rooftop terrace or the central patio at the back of the house were introduced in the house to give it a whole new twist. This project was about creating a secluded, serene urban retreat using a soft, luxurious, yet restrained material palette. The polished concrete floors run throughout the house, as the cemented walls and ceilings, creating a very strong identity and quiet thread. Locally sourced Parotta wood was used for the integrated millwork and a heavily textured Arabescatto marble for the kitchen and bathrooms. The atmosphere of the house is uniquely tranquil, comfortable and surprisingly elegant.
House in Brissago (2013) by Wespi de Meuron Romeo architects situated in Brissago, Switzerland | The Hardt
House in Brissago (2013) by Wespi de Meuron Romeo architects situated in Brissago, Switzerland. Completed in 2013, the 4,165 ft² (387 m²) home is a simply cut monolith in washed concrete, which is docked directly to the road, rises from the natural topography of the slope. A simply cut monolith in washed concrete, which is docked directly to the road, rises from the natural topography of the slope. Two cars are parked almost directly on the roof. The visitor is guided down along a linear alleyway to the entrance door.
An entrance courtyard is located directly behind the wooden entrance gate. Across this courtyard, one enters the house on the top floor and will be received by the kitchen with a long dining table and an open fireplace. Already when entering, the room open itself to the landscape, the “Lago Maggiore” and the mountains. The entrance door and the glass front to the court can completely be a shift into the wall so that the outside and the interior space flows together in the summertime. Lift and staircase lead to the lower floors. At the floor beneath is located the additional living area, with living room, fireplace, library, and TV, as well as a covered outdoor terrace and a generous courtyard with natural stone pavement, two olive trees, and a fountain. Means wide openings to the court and to the outside, exterior and Interior, landscape and architecture forms a unity.
The inside participates in the court, like the court participates in the landscape, offering spectacular views. The court can be closed by two wooden gates, which generate a secure feeling. This court becomes the heart of the house; different paths join together here, like in a historic village. On both sides of the court walkways and stairs lead down to the large garden terrace with swimming pool and outdoor kitchen. On the two lower floors of the house are placed three bedrooms and the baths, as well as fitness room and a sauna; they are also connected to the garden and swimming pool by appropriate exits. Due to its spatial diversity, complex relationships between interior and exterior spaces, diverse path choice, this house can be experienced like a historic village.
The New Old by Jessica Liew located in Melbourne, Australia | The Hardt
The New Old by Jessica Liew located in Melbourne, Australia. The New Old by Jessica Liew located in Melbourne, Australia. This contemporary residence designed by Jessica Liew in 2012 is located in inner city Melbourne, Australia. It maximizes a relatively small 4,144 ft² (385m²) site providing bright but private living spaces. Designed with honesty, natural, light, texture, simplicity, privacy in mind. A house that maximizes a relatively small 4,144 ft² (385 m²) site in inner city Melbourne, providing bright but private living spaces. There is a simple, relaxed feel about this house, loaded with character from the natural materials used including concrete, recycled tumbled bricks and hardwood timber. These provide an honesty and rawness so rarely seen these days – an antithesis to the glitz, luxe, and glamour often seen in a popular magazine and tv programs. To the architect/owner, the aim was to build a relaxed, private home that was energy efficient, practical and imbued with a character from the all-natural materials used – complementing their extensive collection of art and antiquities from their travels. The result is remarkable. A home that has outwitted even other architects who have mistaken it for a renovation, rather than a newly-built dwelling on what was previously the neighbor’s tennis court.
Accommodation: double story dwelling comprising formal living, library, cellar, study, casual living and dining, separate laundry, rumpus, 3 bedrooms, 3 bathrooms and 3 car accommodation. 6-star energy rated: double glazed windows and skylights, double hung ceilings, double insulated stud walls, reverse brick veneer walls, underground water tank, hydronic slab heating, recycled bricks, custom double height pile wool carpet, regenerative hardwood timbers throughout. ‘Switchable’ spaces including a study turning into a guest bedroom (murphy bed); rumpus or second study on level 1; and studio or 3rd bedroom upstairs.
A courtyard sized to a car space for future additional parking requirement. Hidden storage and joinery throughout. Custom steel framed glass pivot doors replacing a conventional front door, the recessed floor mat is the only give away. Antique Chinese screen doors framing the fishpond corridor, mural by celebrated Melbourne street artists Ghostpatrol and Miso; retention of the original chain wire mesh tennis court fencing and tennis court roller; all rooms feature a garden, fishpond or courtyard aspect. Honesty: respect and transparency for all natural materials used – predominant palette comprising black concrete, white painted tumbled bricks and natural timber finish waiting to age with the house.
The Inverted Warehouse/Townhouse by Dean-Wolf Architects | The Hardt
The Inverted Warehouse/Townhouse by Dean-Wolf Architects is an addition and renovation of a Tribeca loft building. The existing structure, a traditional New York warehouse covers the entire lot, consuming the exterior space traditional in domestic construction. Inverting the conventional townhouse organization recovers this coveted ground. Dissipating energy into the dark center of this converted warehouse, three double story voids animate the missing “garden” of the townhouse providing light, air, and visual contemplation.
Admitting light and townhouse “garden” uses, these new spaces provide the structure for domestic life. Exterior court, reading court, and playroom are suspended into the void. Conceived as a new construction built upside down into an existing building, they dissipate a radiant energy into the host.
Self-structuring corten steel panels are suspended in the voids, their shingle style layering allowing the frameless burgundy glass to float down through the walls. The suspended corten structure extends into the double height volume of the playroom with two-story shelving. Continuing the flow of dissipating energy, the downward trajectory opens the floors of the lower levels, inserting two glass floors. Framed with rolled corten sections, they connect the spaces vertically while opening them to light. Countering the downward hanging of spaces is a courtyard layer of silicone-glazed glass, which lifts delicately to the skyline.
Consistent with the logic of inversion, the main entry is onto the fifth floor. Opening onto the tense juxtaposition of exterior and interior voids, the garden lifts to the rooftop while the stair court descends into the private spaces. Two sequences separate public and private routes through these spaces. The upward route joins the public spaces, ending in a continuous roof deck inhabiting the larger space of the city. The downward route traces the inversion into the bedrooms, playrooms, and study through the stair, culminating in the glass floors and extending a view back up through all the gardens to the sky.