- Gellink + Schwämmlein Architekten
Text description provided by the architects. The location of House Three is characterized by an unobstructed view of the Swabian Alps, which includes a medieval monastery located in the center of the village. It was desired by the owners to have the monastery in direct sight from the house. The fulfillment of this wish was complicated by a tight development plan and a narrow construction window. Nevertheless, in satisfying the needs of the brief a structural geometry was developed that allowed for a complete view of the monastery – the balcony area on the south side of the house was extruded out of the building envelope, allowing for the panoramic view over the village and the surrounding landscape.
Another important point that needed to be considered was sound insulation. The building plot is located directly in an airport landing flight path. To combat the noise, a concrete pitched roof was included in the design to help deflect and keep out the sound of aircraft flying overhead. A concern of the architects was to try and circumvent the specifications of the development plan with regard to the roof, which allowed for a tiled roof in either red or grey. The result is a unique concept in which the house is uniformly clad with light grey “Eternit Pictura” fiber cement panels, extending up over the pitched concrete roof. This “wrapping” of the house in a consistent material gives it a monolithic appearance, the building elements perfectly tied together as a homogenous whole.
The north, east and west facades are, in contrast to the south façade, all closed. The elongated window formats deny any sight lines from the neighboring houses but still allow for views from within the house itself. The protruding entrance area and balcony, with its large glass surfaces, contrast with the seemingly linear architecture of the main house structure. This effect is reinforced by the lower base of the building being clad in black fiber cement panels.
The kitchen, dining and living areas are column-free and thus flow into each other. At the heart of the building is the single-flight staircase connecting the three levels and the various living areas. The floor to ceiling windows on the ground floor, seamlessly connecting the interior and exterior, provides the living area with an impressive spaciousness. Upstairs is the master bedroom, a large bathroom complete with a spa and a small library. On the hillside are the children’s rooms, equipped with a generous playroom. All of the children’s spaces are connected directly to the garden. To the rear of the house is the au pair room, as well as the laundry and technical rooms.