Nakahouse by XTEN Architecture
Architect: XTEN Architecture
Location: Los Angeles, California, USA
Project Team: Monika Haefelfinger, Principal; Austin Kelly, AIA, LEED AP, Principal; Monika Haefelfinger, Austin Kelly, Scott Utterstrom, Jae Rodriguez, Qichen Cao, Karin Nelson, Joseph Tran, Karin Von Wyl
General Contractor: NWGC, INC.
Structural Engineer: Axial Engineering Group
Geotech: CY Geotech
Project Year: 2011
Project Area: 2700 sqf
Photographs: Steve King
Nakahouse is an abstract remodel of a 1960′s hillside home located on a West facing ridge in the Hollywood Hills, just below the Hollywood sign. To the South and West are views of the Beechwood Canyon; to the East is a protected natural ravine, with a view of Griffith Park Observatory in the distance.
The existing home was built as a series of interconnected terraced spaces on the downslope property. Due to geotechnical, zoning and budget constraints the foundations and building footprint were maintained in the current design. The interior was completely reconfigured however, and the exterior was opened up to the hillside views and the natural beauty of the surroundings. A large terrace was added to link the kitchen/ dining area with the living room, with a steel stair leading to a rooftop sundeck. Terraces were also added to the bedroom wing and the upper master bedroom suite to extend the interior spaces through floor to ceiling glass sliding panels that disappear into adjacent walls when open.
The exterior walls are finished in a smooth black Meoded ventetian plaster system, designed to render the building as a singular sculptural object set within the lush natural setting. A series of abstract indoor-outdoor spaces with framed views to nature are rendered in white surfaces of various materials and finishes; lacquered cabinetry, epoxy resin floors and decks and painted metal.
The contrast between the interior and exterior of the house is intentional and total. While the exterior is perceived as a specific finite and irregular object in the landscape the opposite occurs inside the building. Once inside the multitude of white surfaces blend the rooms together, extending ones sense of space and creating a heightened, abstract atmosphere from which to experience the varied forms of the hillside landscape.
Corallo House by PAZ Arquitectura
Architect: PAZ Arquitectura – Alejandro Paz
Location: Santa Rosalía, Guatemala City, Guatemala
Collaborators: Axel Mendoza, Gabriel Rodriguez, Alex Titus, Mario Roberto Paz, Claudia Pezarozzi, Wolfgang Schoenbeck
Landscape Design: Pokorny y Valencia, Arquitectura de Paisaje
Construction: Conarq / Paz Arquitectura
Structure Design: Consultores Estructurales
Built Area: 747.50 sqm
Photographs: Andres Asturias
Located on a dense hillside forest in the Santa Rosalía area of Guatemala City, Corallo House integrates the existing forest into the layout of the house. It merges nature into the architectural intervention. The design process began with the aim to preserve the existing trees, in order to have the trees interact with the living space.
The floor plan is free of columns and the changes in level adapt to the existing topography. Both façades are mostly glass in order to connect the interior to the exterior. The main structural component is exposed concrete, which shows the rustic texture of the wood formwork, allowing a dialogue between the formal element and the textures of the forest.
Nettleton 199 by SAOTA
Architect: SAOTA - Stefan Antoni Olmesdahl Truen Architects
Location: Clifton, Cape Town, South Africa
Project Team: Greg Truen, Stefan Antoni, Teswill Sars
Interior Design: OKHA Interiors
Main Furniture Supplier: OKHA Interiors
Completion Date: 2011
Photographs: Adam Letch
“The brief was to create a building that maximised the connection with the view and the sea, create a garden on the mountain side of the site and to minimise views over neighbouring buildings,” says Greg Truen, Project Partner. The site is positioned on the side of Lion’s Head and has fantastic views over the Atlantic Ocean to the west.
The decision was to create a double volume space at the top of the site that could connect the garden court to the east, while also taking advantage of the views over the ocean to the west. The entrance hall is a dramatic, vertical space and provides a counterpoint to the living spaces. The volume of this large area is modulated by the floor which has two levels, and by the bedroom floor which floats into the space and is hung from the roof.
This element, which has a soft s-curve, contains the master bedroom and its ancillary spaces are separated from the living room double volume by a set of walnut shutters. “The building provides a volumetrically dramatic and dynamic interior space on a grand scale. The objective of the interior décor was to create a softer and intimate counterpoint whilst not jeopardising the clean, geometric lines of the architecture.
These elements can harmoniously co-exist and work off each other,” says Adam Court of OKHA Interiors. By utilising a broad base of textures and finishes, the décor feels natural and subtly organic, comfort being of paramount importance at all times; the overall ambiance is one of calm and serenity.