This house was designed to achieve optimum privacy while allowing a southern aspect for all the living accommodation . The client wished to enjoy an open plan living area on the ground level with compact sleeping quarters on the first level. A gallery was introduced to make a visual connection between the levels, so both could enjoy the southern court and water feature. Materials such as vertical panels of “tecu” bronze and stone were used on the front northern elevation with small apertures, while large open glazing was utilized at the rear facing the private garden.
This 3240sq ft. house was built on two levels, on a 0.2137ha site. It is designed using a procession of spaces from a starkly designed front northern elevation with small apertures from the public front garden through to a southern private lit filled court with a water feature. Views to the court are designed into the floor plan. The open plan kitchen, living and dining areas can enjoy the southern aspect of the court through large glass openings and sliding doors.
The front elevation uses a variety of materials including stone to the left-hand side of the entrance and a bronze vertical cladding on the right-hand side of the entrance. A carefully designed link connects the two-storey element, on one axis, with the one-story element on an orthogonal axis. The junction is designed simply. A two-storey gallery connects the upper level with the lower living area offering an open landing area which can be used as an office or a quiet space.
Awen is a druidic term for inspiration depicted by 3 rays of light. And that is what this house means to us. It is inspired and inspiring, filled with light and space, where our 3 daughters have freedom to move, run and play.
On embarking on this project it was very important to us that our house was a home, an expression of how we live, as well as fit the plot of land. On meeting Edel we felt she really heard us, she was the first architect we met that thought outside the box and we knew straight away we wanted to work with her.
We have been living in this house 2.5 years now and find we never want to leave it! We never feel claustrophobic or on top of each other.
The large windows allow for real inside outside living. The triple sliding door means that we can open it out and really feel like we are outside. The South West aspect makes the most of the sun. Our house feels bright on the darkest of days. The HRV system keeps the air fresh with an even temperature through out the house. The solar panels give us constant hot water throughout the year. We only use the underfloor heating in Winter.
The open plan living allows us all to do our own thing whilst still being in each other’s company. I also love the flexibility of the space that we can easily move furniture around and create new spaces. When the kids get older we can add a sliding door to from the double height space into the main living space so that they can have their own space then. The studio allows me to work from home whilst still having a visual of the whole house. The den allows my husband to watch his matches in peace! Our library in the double height space is the heart of the house. This is where we read the Sunday paper, read books and play board games with the kids.
This is a house that fits outlives perfectly right now and a house that will mature with us as we develop the gardens and create new spaces within it as our lives dictate.