Architects: BURO II & ARCHI+I
Location: Koksijde, Belgium
Project Year: 2012
Photographs: Siska Vandecasteele
The use of the house acted as the guiding principle for the design. The ground floor was conceived of as an open plan containing the entrance, garage, bathroom and a polyvalent space. This area also functions as storage space and sleeping and accommodation space for visiting children or grandchildren. Sliding windows that reach as high as the ceiling and venetian blind shutters which can be opened allow for optimal enjoyment of the garden when indoors. The first floor commands stunning views and a covered patio completes the holiday feeling. This floor contains the following living functions: an open living space at roof height adjacent to the patio, a kitchen, bedroom and bathroom.
Integration in the environment
The duality in use reveals itself in the materials used for the house, which refer to the typology of the fishermen’s cottages with whitewashed stonework, a black tarred base and a sloping, red-tiled roof. All around the base on the ground floor there are semi-transparent venetian blind shutters that can open, while the first floor was constructed using white architectural concrete (formed from sandblasted pine planks) and has a sloping red-tiled roof.
When the house is not in use, the semi-transparent shutters are closed and the house forms a clearly delineated volume. On the street side the plot is secluded by deciduous hedges so that only the white upper floor is visible from the public domain.
This ‘summer house’ has an extremely functional design. The particularly original concept of this house guarantees its inhabitants the pleasure of moments of relaxation and togetherness with their family, while sufficient privacy has also been provided. The design is also a contemporary interpretation of the characteristic fishermen’s cottages in the coastal surroundings.