LM Guest House / Desai Chia Architecture

© Paul Warchol

Architects: Desai Chia Architecture
Location: Dutchess County, , USA
Area: 2,000 sqm
Year: 2012
Photographs: Paul Warchol

Structural Engineer: Ove Arup & Partners
Mechanical/Electrical/Plumbing Engineer: Tucker Associates (Salamone Group)
Geotechnical Engineer: GeoDesign
Civil Engineer: Paggi Martin DelBene
Landscape Architect: Michael Van Valkenburgh Associates
Building Envelope Consultant: James R. Gainfort AIA Consulting Architect
Lighting Consultant: Christine Sciulli Light + Design
Construction Manager: Daniel O’Connell’s Sons

© Paul Warchol

This 2,000 square foot guest house is situated on a rock outcropping that overlooks a trout pond and open farmland. Designed as a contemplative retreat for weekend visitors, the house allows one to experience the expansive surrounding landscape with vast unobstructed views. The house integrates a number of sustainable design strategies including geothermal heating and cooling, radiant floors, natural ventilation, motorized solar shades, photovoltaic panels, and rainwater collection for irrigation.

© Paul Warchol

Open views to nature create a stunning backdrop for the main living and sleeping areas. A main bedroom and two ‘couchette’ nooks with built-in bunk beds provide accommodations for six overnight guests.

© Paul Warchol

The couchette nooks, bathroom, and storage rooms are housed within a slatted wood core in the middle of the house. The custom wood wall system surrounding the core allows natural light to penetrate through to the inner spaces of the home by day; at night, light emanates from the wood core and provides a warm, inviting glow in the living areas. The slatted system also allows the whole house to ‘breathe’; comfortable natural ventilation occurs throughout the house, even in the sleeping couchettes and storage closets.

© Paul Warchol

The structural design for the house relies on 4 steel columns imbedded in the wood core; the roof cantilevers out from these 4 columns. This elegant structural solution uses the minimum amount of materials to achieve expansive, open living areas at both ends of the house. The façade of the house was designed as a thermally robust system of high-performance, triple-paned glass units that vary in width from 10’ to 20’. The entire assembly was prefabricated off-site, shipped to the site in one container, and erected by crane in 2 days.

© Paul Warchol

Landscape design strategies were closely tied to the design of the house. A tight palette of native vegetation highlights vistas and other natural features on the property while also managing storm water run-off. Local bluestone slabs and shale excavated from the site create outdoor seating areas and pathways; a bluestone slab terrace between the house and a nearby grove of pine trees provides an intimate outdoor room for entertaining and dining. Bluestone steps from the terrace lead to a barbeque area and an outdoor shower in the woods.

Cite: "LM Guest House / Desai Chia Architecture" 24 Apr 2013. ArchDaily. Accessed 30 May 2015. <http://www.archdaily.com/?p=363807>
  • Pingback: LM Guest House / Desai Chia Architecture | Nick Socrates Contemporary Art

  • joel

    Mies Van Der Who?

  • Per

    Yes, very Farnsworth House without the legs.

  • Joseph N. Biondo

    Restrained elegance!

  • Luciano Grippo

    much boring than the Farnsworth, the proportions and the spatial sequence are dull

  • akbar

    Nothing much interesting+old concept(Mies Van de Rohe or philip johnson)

  • Max

    Hello Sexy!

  • Nick

    Ground loops are not geothermal and I wish people would learn the difference already.

  • Pingback: LM Guest House by Desai Chia Architecture | GBlog

  • Steve Satterwhite

    (Whew. What a mostly grumpy bunch of commentating critics.)
    Beautiful. I want one of these.
    But for full-time living, we will need to add a little junk room).