The existing house is an example of modernism architecture carrying an architectural heritage of significance. It is our belief that the original concept demonstrates architectural elements of quality that they have merit to be conserved. The building can be brought into the 21st century without interrupting and modifying its fabric in great extent.
In continuity with architect's, Chiasserini, idea, the proposals aim to reveal the qualities of the original design by pushing the boundaries of the original concept even further.
The main idea is to purge the building from elements that we believe to mask the architectural quality of the house in order to reveal its verticality and to push forward the original idea of the forest. Minor infill extensions are proposed to ground floor to clearly put in scene the three distinguish volumes. In addition, it is proposed to slightly raise the parapet to underline even more the verticality. In the same time, the raised parapet will act as a balustrade for the roof garden. All external areas associated with private areas have been re-introduced in the form of loggias and patios and are contained within the fabric of the building. It is proposed to demolish all balconies.
The idea of the forest extends beyond the appearance of the building and is reflected in its function. It is proposed to introduce a green sedum roof, to install a rainwater harvesting system, that can be used for irrigation, but also for the needs of the house (Spa facilities, WC etc.), solar panels and air handling unit. This will bring the building to the 21st century. In addition, it is proposed to introduce an entrance draught lobby to better regulate the indoor temperature and save energy.
It is proposed to keep the existing staircase and to introduce a lift that serves all levels of the house, both existing and proposed. We believe that the lift will not only add value and functionality to the house, but also it is in line with the principle that architecture should be accessible for all. The existing staircase is extended to provide access to the roof garden. The extended staircase is partially covered with a glass sloped roof in order to respect the distances from the boundary as set by planning restrictions.
The main entrance of the house is relocated along Via XXIV Maggio. We believe that this is the natural place for the main entrance which follows the volumetric arrangement of the house. In that way, with the use of glass elements, the entrance adopts a monumental dimension, highlighting the verticality of the house.
All floors benefit from a separate toilet. Storage, ironing room and utility room are also arranged over the floors to accommodate all client’s requirements. Stacking of utility areas has been privileged to facilitate services (drains-water-gas etc.).
Co-living area: A spacious open plan living area is arranged over the ground floor level. The area benefits from direct level access to an outdoor sitting area and garden. The kitchen is connected with a pantry / utility room which is accessed directly from outside. A double faced gas fire place is proposed in between the sitting and dining/kitchen area. In that way a subtle spatial division is created. The sitting area benefits of a double height bringing verticality in the inside.
Co-working area: the co-working area is arranged over the ground floor and first floor level. At ground floor is created a spacious sitting / office area that has direct level access to an outdoor sitting area. A double-faced gas fireplace serves both outdoor and indoor sitting areas. A separate access is created for this area as it can be used as an office. The area also benefits from a kitchenette. A staircase provides access to the upper level (mezzanine). The upper level can be used as an open working space or to be divided in three working areas with a modular partition system that has been proposed specifically for this area. Similarly, to the co-living area the co-working area benefits of a double height. Also, a pattern of square openings is arranged over the north faced wall, along the staircase, to enrich the space with a play of light. This pattern extends to the second floor.
Co-wellness area: A gym area is arranged at ground floor level. A number of vertical narrow openings bring natural light. A staircase provides access to a basement area which accommodates spa facilities, WC and shower room. Also, an outdoor space creates a light-well which accommodates an external hot tub. Overall, it is proposed to use apparent concrete to basement level. This will add a mineral dimension to this area which brings calmness and simplicity for the spa facilities. The proposed lift serves the basement.
Multimedia area: the multimedia area is arranged at first floor level. The area has openings that can provide natural light, but it has been designed to be essentially a black room that can be used as a cinema room.
Master Bedroom: The master bedroom is arranged at second floor level. It benefits of a spacious walk-in wardrobe and en-suite. It also benefits of a private patio area which is animated by the extended square openings pattern developed on the north wall. Also, the patio has an obscured corner glass window that brings natural light and secures privacy. The patio is open to the sky. Plantation is proposed to the patio.
Bedrooms: two spacious bedrooms are arranged at second floor level. They benefit of walk-in wardrobes, en-suites and loggia balconies.
Guest room: A guest room is arranged at first floor level and benefits of walk-in wardrobe, en-suite and loggia balcony.
Landscaping: Ground Floor: It is proposed to maintain the ratio of the existing green areas by introducing a contemporary system with metal sheets and concrete walls to support the garden at higher level. The idea is to minimise the need of using staircases and to reintroduce nature into the site. An outdoor sitting area with an open fire pit is associated directly with the co-living area while a separate outdoor sitting area is associated with the co-working area. The outdoor floor materials change to delimitate different areas. The entrance is framed by landscape elements and small trees. The introduction of different floor treatment and small urban furniture delimitates the entrance area focusing to the building. Along the east boundary it is proposed to introduce a number of trees for privacy. Along the north boundary it is proposed to maintain the driveway with the possibility to park two cars.
Landscaping: Roof Garden: The roof is proposed to be accessible and to accommodate a roof garden. An outdoor covered sitting area it is also proposed at roof level.
Materials - Sustainability: The proposed materials are limited to an earthly palette with off-white render and apparent concrete walls. All existing walls are proposed to be covered with insulated render increasing their thermal performance.