House in Otake / Suppose Design Office


Architects: Suppose Design Office
Location: Otake city, Hiroshima,
Program: Personal house
Site area: 372.63 sqm
Building area: 56.99 sqm
Total floor area: 115.51 sqm
Photographs: Toshiyuki Yano from Nacasa&Partners Inc.

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The Otake house is located in the West of Hiroshima prefecture, on a high plateau that neighbors the Kamei Park of the Kamei Castle Ruins. To the South is an industrial region and a beautiful mountain range, and to the North a remarkable view of the Seto Inland Sea and Miyajima. We created a design fitting to these two contrasting and beautiful scenes.

We thought of the North side as the type of scenery you take in and savor, and the South side as the type that you place yourself in. Structurally we divided the area between load bearing zones and free zones to make a place that could have two personalities at once. The North side is open even while closed, with the bedrooms, kitchen, dining area, and wide apertures to view the distant scenery, which at the same time are functional as load bearing parts of the structure.

structural diagram
structural diagram

We wanted the South side to be as close as possible to being outside, so we got rid of some structural elements and designed a living area and terrace with a 6 meter eave,treating the terraceand living area as equal to create a free space with no division between inside and out.Though there were setbacks after considering the structure necessary to support such a large eave,as well as legal safety standards,the building began to take shape.


By covering the entire building with water proof material used in ship construction we made a unique and detailed building that doesn’t require sealants or tiling. Furthermore, because the glossy, water proof material wraps around the building inside and out uninterrupted, a nature-like space is created where you can take in the outside scenery and the building and surroundings seem to blend together.

By considering views about execution from the planning stage on, we discovered water proof materials previously unknown to us. In much the same way that an object will look different when seen from different angles, by looking at one project from the different view points of planning, structure, and execution we think we were able to move in a better direction.


By rethinking standard practices and personal opinions about structure,utility,form,materials, interiors,and exteriors, we think we can find new possibilities for materials,the relationship of form and space,and the building and its surroundings, in a planning environment that opens up new wonders not found in traditional buildings.

By combining traditional values and new, and breaking down not just the border between inside and out but between the values themselves, we hope to create the buildings of the future.

Cite: "House in Otake / Suppose Design Office" 07 Sep 2009. ArchDaily. Accessed 29 May 2015. <>
  • toyboy


  • Norman

    Im loving every single work SDO produced. they’re undoubtedly expertise in small scale housing. Love it.

  • Gabriel

    Un contraste fabuleux. Un sens de la forme très stimulant. Une merveille de finesse.
    Contrast and form create an architectural object. Good work.

  • Stan


  • patj

    absolutely love this, i want this house

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  • majchers

    Oh, those Japaneese! Love it!
    P.S. Got any window washing contractor yet?

  • Ill

    It is beautiful but I don’t really get what they’re saying: “because the glossy, water proof material wraps around the building inside and out uninterrupted, a nature-like space is created”, “The North side is open even while closed” ..

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  • majchers

    Hey, III ! Do not worry, not everything one has to understand. Just enjoy the beauty!
    P.S. Gorgeous indeed. Like a black Steinway – ellegant, cool and almost ice cold… And piercing, like a… STEALTH !

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  • Remkool

    fantastic, cool and no expensive architecture….

    Good idea :

    RELAX and ENJOY !!!!

    • koolhaas

      dude – great looks, very nice finishes. however – area cited amounts for 15% lot coverage. perhaps it is local ordinances, but that results in a ’3 bedroom’ house, where one barely squeezes around the bed in the ‘main’ and accesses the second through the third one. furthermore, there is a single WC in the whole place! J standards?… please!

      relaxin and enjoying the lovely glossy ceiling, however, what’s the height? 201 cm?? there seems to be some good attic space above, i.e. not much of a height restraint – how about some air? sorry, guys, but it leaves an overall feeling of a beautifully polished car crusher with a view… ;)

  • Andrew Geber

    the sliding door and the terrace are really something!

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  • afshin

    so goooooooooooooooooood

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  • Douglas Clark

    Really? You people enjoy this building?
    The building lacks any attempt to solve any REAL problems. It seems to become a sculptured structure in form. Its more an art peice than anything and not practical. Plans and sections are dull. Diagrams are comical.
    Whats up with the black facade?