- Collaborators: Niovi Tsompikou and N. Apergis, S. Cherouvim, I. Kloni
- Structural Engineering: G. Karambelas
- Mechanical And Electrical Engineers: P. Chatzimpailos - Technoico
- Project Supervision: G. Karambelas
- Architect In Charge: Rena Sakellaridou
- City: Athens
- Country: Greece
The story: A house in a mystical garden in a dense urban setting.
When the client came to the office he talked about a house in a garden for him and his son. We talked about the garden, about the many trees already there. Would it be possible to keep the palm tree? We talked about the house. It would have to be small. But he would need a corner to listen to music, and lots of light coming from all sides.
This is a house in a secret garden, a house in its own world, open to nature, even though surrounded by the dense urban fabric of Athens. Hidden behind the trees, the house accepts the garden, it integrates its colors, its shadows, its changing over time. A linear pool accentuates geometries. The garden enters the house through the windows, connects the front to the back. Nature is dominant.
The house consists of a concrete base and a white, metal-structure ‘beam’, a linear projecting ‘bridge’ that balances on the base, its folded ends open to the view. In a clear distinction between more public and private areas, the base houses the living areas while the white ‘bridge’ houses the bedrooms. Opening up to both sides the interior allows views of the garden to flood the interior. The program is simple: living room and kitchen on the ground floor, two bedroom-suites on the upper floor that open up to the green roof, and gym, guest room and utilities placed in the basement. A black metal staircase connecting all three levels evolves like a geometric ‘flower’ and becomes a point of reference. The two main floors are visually connected through a glass floor, while a skylight on top brings natural light in.
White walls for the owners’ collection of paintings, wooden floors, black aluminum window frames, black metal and transparent glass, a revolving mirror door that separates the livingroom from the kitchen. Reflections, unexpected views of the garden through a horizontal slit on the concrete structure, another one for the kitchen, the view of a tree framed by a square window in the livingroom. Untreated reinforced concrete with visible the marks of the formwork for the main structure, thermal plaster on the white ‘beam’ of the upper floor and the almost black cube of the kitchen. A galvanized steel door and fence hides the building from the street. The house can now surrender to the garden.