LocationAlmen, The Netherlands
Design TeamAura Luz Melis, Reinier Suurenbroek
Text description provided by the architects. This small house in the countryside is designed around a long panoramic window with a view into the garden and the surrounding landscape. The 17.5 m long, floor to ceiling, stretch of glass blurs the threshold between inside and outside. The longitudinal frame guides the eye in a ‘walk’ through the landscape; from a dense cluster of trees up close and out to the farm fields further away.
To capture the panorama in the best possible way the glass facade was placed at an angle, giving the house its characteristic triangular floor plan. The hypotenuse of the triangle is the glass wall, the adjacent side aligns with the side of the neighboring house abutting the site and the opposite side is the front facade which is designed to resemble the local barns.
Approaching the front facade a small window looks right through the house and the glass wall giving the impression that there is actually no house behind it, like in a ‘western’ movie set. The ‘thinness’ of the semi-traditional facade is reinforced by a large roof light just above the entrance; here, ample sunlight makes it feels as though a step from outside, through the front door, only leads outside again. And in a way this is true because as one enters, in the corner of the house, the view outside is already there.
Moving from the entrance towards the living room/kitchen the view gradually opens up until the triangular plan becomes the angle of one’s field of vision towards the landscape. From here the view is framed on the right side by a tree that was cut from the garden to support the roof and the floor above. This tree extends the forest just outside of the house into the interior. On the left side the view disappears behind a stair that leads through a dizzying space of angled surfaces that result from the combination of a triangular plan and a triangular roof. Upstairs an over-sized window detailed to appear as a hole in the roof looks out into the tree tops.