Washed up on the banks of the estuary to meet the freshwater and rising tides,
House D built by architects from Lode Architecture establishes a strong, intense dialogue with its natural surroundings. Built as a peaceful refuge amidst a pristine natural landscape, this space is intimate, joyful, and animated by the moods and natural cycles of nature.
A first glance at the home's front shows a location atop a slanted retaining wall – thanks to the fold of space created by this angled slope, the lower floor of this home enjoys an intimate, cozy space with natural insulation from the ground that forms the back wall. The home's structure features two distinct masses: on the bottom, the walls are comprised of glazed glass, while the upper mass has walls of wooden panels that form wavering trellises all along the exterior of the windows. With a kayak stashed in the front yard, you can see that this home is designed for someone who loves spending time in nature.
A step back shows this home's convenient location along the estuary, a perfect spot for an avid kayaker. While the lower mass offers panoramic water views, the upper wooden mass blends in with the trees, forming an organic camouflage.
All around the ground floor, the residents enjoy panoramic views of the woods, and beyond, the river. On the ground outside the home, glazed patio tiles extend for a few feet before fading into the forest floor, in a statement that establishes a strong dialogue with the un-manicured and raw elements of the natural environs.
The lower floor houses most of the common living space, with sliding glass walls that allow a great amount of natural light and air to enter the home. With the open feeling of dining in a park pavilion, the dining room table has been placed near the wall, offering an assortment of wooden and plastic seating that ties together the natural and the manmade under one dining table.
The lower level has no windows along half of its walls, as it's built up against a hill. Therefore, the lower rooms have been given an extra dose of light with a sky window that brings in light from the upper floors. Everything about this minimalist living room arrangement highlights the importance of nature, from the exposed campfire-style hearth, to the way the couch as been placed to gaze out over the trees and lake. With the same glazed tiles both indoor and out, the floor extends seamlessly between the two areas, creating a continuous dialogue between indoors and out.
One of the most notable aspects of this home's design is the way it presents a stark duality: polished glass surfaces on one half, with rough, warped wooden boards on the other half. In a balanced blend of rusticity and sophistication, this dual structure draws its strength and appeal from the confrontation of these two elements.
A spiral staircase that looks crisply square – these stairs make a unique statement as they wind through the heart of the home. In this design, raw plywood meets sleek polished boards and random black squares in another blend of rusticity and sophistication.
In the upper level, a succession of small spaces creates a radically different cozy atmosphere from the open, panoramic spaces housed below. A walk through the upper floor runs through a succession of bedrooms, all illuminated through the slats in the wooden trellises that filter the views and the light. Acting as a peaceful refuge, this is the area of the home that speaks to a quieter, more intimate nature, providing space to curl up and gain a sense of peaceful privacy.
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