LocationScaiano, 6578 Caviano, Switzerland
ArchitectsMarkus Wespi Jérôme de Meuron architects
From the architect. This house for vacations is located at the border of a small historical village, which is still quite good preserved. There is a beautiful view over the lake and towards the mountains.
It's only possible to reach the house by foot. There isn't a street leading close to the site, what made the construction more difficult.
The house defines the border of the historical village, so we created a sort of a boundary wall where you can live inside. It was important to get the permission for a flat roof (what usually is impossible in a historical area) to create a simple cube like a wall. Even as important as the form was to use the same material (natural stones) the walls in this area are made with.
Without the old roof we obtained a new abstract form, which is modern and at the same time very old. The walls haven't been changed in any way, it was like this long time before, but it was invisible.
The house is very small and there wasn't enough space to integrate also the bathroom in the existing volume. So it's hidden underneath the ground to be able to leave the appearance of the house like it was before.
In the inside there were a lot of different levels which gave the character of the house. They have been maintained and connected by a lot of small stairs.
The windows have been placed at the inside or the outside of the walls, so depending the point of view some are visible and some are not, they seems not to be at all.
Some inside walls were slanting and they haven't been corrected, they even have been increased to obtain a aspect more massive