A picturesque setting and a predominantly cold and wet climate called for a simple yet sophisticated approach to this countryside villa. What sets this project apart is its austere and refined approach to design sensibilities while maintaining absolute precedence to functionality and resilience.
House BRAS is located on a lush green site abutting a lake in the middle of an old allotment in the suburbs of Antwerp.
The house is designed to blend into its surrounding natural landscape. The meandering plan allows daylight to penetrate during all seasons and at any time of the day while achieving unobstructed views of the garden.
The ground floor consists of three main zones – the living area with an open kitchen, a wellness zone with swimming pool and sauna, and a resting wing with bedrooms and music room offering panoramic view over the water. On the first floor is the master suite with views of the tree crowns and a library overlooking the pond through the double height music room.
These zones are physically and visually connected with glazed passages along four closed blocks covered with dark larch veneer. The boxes form the supporting structure for the roof that covers the open floorplan and include more separable functions like the entrances, vertical circulation, pantry, storages and bedrooms.
Technical spaces and car parks are located underground and are accessible through a ramp that disappears into a pond. Trusses are integrated in the roof slopes, making it possible to realize large column-free cut-outs in the natural stone envelope. These openings are finished with aluminium joinery.
To underline the monolithic character of the house, the roof - the fifth facade - is also clad with Musschelkalk natural stone slabs. The polished panels in three different sizes are arranged in a directionless Roman pattern so that the roof surfaces and facades merge with one another. And rough blocks for stepping stones and terraces physically connect the house to the floor.