Crepain Spaens House / CSD Architecten

Architects: CSD Architecten
Location: Antwerp, Central area,
Project Team: Britt Crepain & Stefan Spaens
Project Year: 2007-2009
Photographs: Luc Roymans, Tom Peeters, Lize van Schoor

1. The client and the program for this house

We build this house for ourselves, Britt Crepain & Stefan Spaens (previously CSO ontwerpers, currently )

floor plans

2. The context

A very small plot of land (4x15m / build 4×12,5m), in a narrow street in the Centre of Antwerp, rear facade facing south. The design responds by opening up both facades maximum, split-levels and a void (with a roof of glass) on the top 3 levels (the main living areas : bureau/library/kitchen/dining and the highest split level is the sitting room with open fire and views of city and sky, from there you access the roof-terras (still splitleveled) with views over the entire city. In total the house has a basement, ground floor and 4 levels. The splitlevels bring the light from the south through the house. A lot more than with a normal (or standard) racking of floors, that most houses have. Sunlight comes through everywhere, especially in wintertime when the sun is low (ecologically we benefit from a south facade in winter, in summer we can open op top windows and create a natural ventilation through the void and the opening to the roofterras, currently (it’s snowing) the top level is almost like an iglo, with the open fire, and snow that lays on the glazed inclined windows.

3. Choice of materials

We chose all materials as natural as possible, colours flowing into each other, to create a monolithic character (other wise). Inspiration for the color pallet was found on a beach in france (driftwood, pebbles, the color of the sand)

4. Surfaces & levels

Footprint : outerwall 50 sqm 47 sqm innerwall, (when splitleveled : front =27sqm/vide stairs/elevator 4/level behind 16sqm )? 6 and a half (-1 basement (storage)/ 0 groundfloor (polyvalent for bureau/commercial or as it is now ‘carport’, washing room and extra storage behind a curtain). level 0,5 = vestiaire, level 1 : front main bedroom/master bathroom, rear second bedroom + showerroom / level 2 : front bureau – rear hobby+guest room / level 3 front : kitchen – rear dining / level 4 sitting room aroud open fire and access to first roof terrace / level 5 main roof terrace

5. Architecture & interior

Britt Crepain designed all the furniture, completely integrated (functional and esthetically) in the architecture that Britt & Stefan both designed. some of the fittings (for example glazed doors, are also designed by her) The rest of the fittings carefully selected…

6. The atmosphere

The changing of the colors by the sunlight that you cannot capture on foto (only on video), the warmth of the house, the iglo, the silence on the top floor and roof-terras, our favourite spots to sit, and the angle of view that you have there. In short : the actual and always changing atmosphere. (but to capture this, you have to live here for a while)

Cite: "Crepain Spaens House / CSD Architecten" 05 Jan 2010. ArchDaily. Accessed 27 May 2015. <>
  • richie


  • Bianchini

    This is a hell of a great house!

  • Louis

    Why so mutch attention to the stairs when there’s a elevator in the house. I was shocked when I saw the floor plans. No wonder they didn’t maked pictures of it. Still nice house! like the kitchen…

  • Nicholas Patten

    I'd Live Here: Crepain Spaens House.

  • M

    Great !!!

  • eb

    the car behind a glass door is hideous. but the house overall is interesting.

  • pj

    how is one supposed to place a cup of coffee in the cupholder of their car while backing out of the garage in the morning? i like the idea of the slanted garage space, but i do not think that it is very practical when it comes down to it.

    • benjamin

      pj, you can see in the sectional plans that its just a visual effect. great house by the way.

  • Susana

    A nod to Paul Rudolph?