What happens when a family of water skier wants to restore some old ruins and emphasize its panoramic view of the river? This lovely house is the answer that Ragazzi Architects designed. Its ultra-minimalism relies on the beauty of pine boards and concrete flooring, which together create a natural but tough structure. This home had to be able to withstand the frequent mud slides and storms of the area. Another restriction placed on the architects was that the ruins from which the house was formed lie at the centre of a conservation area. They were not allowed to damage a single tree and couldn't expand the house beyond the reach of the old ruins lest they infringe on the conservation land. Let's look at this surprising solution to these strict circumstances!
The natural splendour of fall surrounds this house from every angle. We can already see where the architects have had to include the trees in their design. They left a gap on this patio's tile to allow the young maple to grow undisturbed. Beyond the legal requirements, this incorporation of trees into the house's design heightens its appeal to the nature-loving residents. The space feels at peace with the wilderness and the residents can feel secure in the knowledge that their home blends into the surroundings instead of being an eyesore in the precious conservation area. Besides, such phenomenal views of the forest are sure to be calming and serene.
Here we can see the stunning view of the river below, as well as the end of the building where it floats out towards that river. The architects wanted the house to extend towards the river, as a glass oculus, creating an amazing view. Also notice the steps leading up to the home. They're made out of concrete to offer firm footing during the rain storms and mudslides that the area experiences. Otherwise, the landscaping has been kept to a minimum to preserve the unity between the home and the surroundings.
We were surprised and then delighted to see such an open and empty living room. The furniture is deep shades of blue and green to keep the feeling of the nearby greenery and water echoing through the design. Otherwise, the pine walls and concrete flooring visually takeover the space. The pine wood has been chosen to feel natural, of course, and though a fireplace has been tucked into it, it's entirely a feature of function. There's no mantle, hardly any decor, and even the lighting is almost invisible. Instead, the lighting is provided by the huge windows. This open room feels spacious and clean, while encouraging the residents to reflect on and enjoy the surroundings.
The dining room has many of the same elements as the living room. The view of the river has been partially obscured by the trees, but they provide the benefit of shade and movement. It makes for a calm living space.
You may not recognize this at first, but it's the kitchen! Every last appliance has been tucked into the substantial cupboards that also hide the microwave in much the same way the fireplace was hidden. The kitchen sink and the counter space are truly bare bones. This design makes it clear that the real attraction is outside the windows. For more fantastic minimalist kitchens, check out our gallery here.
The matching bowl sink and tub look soft and serene against the warm pine and sunny window. The spouts are quite stylishly supported solely by the floor, floating elegantly above the bowls. This simple fixture is really all it takes to make a big statement in minimalist styles. And before you worry about privacy, notice that the very edge of a pull-down screen is visible at the top of the window. It retracts completely simply to complete the minimalist feel.
Here is one path up to the home from the river. The home fits right into the lovely fall scene and we can see that amazing over-hang again, making the most of the wonderful view for the family.
If you're looking to make the most of an elegant view in your home, check out how this home makes the most of its panoramic views!