In a quiet suburban neighbourhood in the Kanto region of Japan, this ranch-style home by APOLLO Architects and Associates is defined by two massive, offset concrete volumes with a board-formed finish. Inward looking, the house uses courtyards to provide private space for the family.
Set back from the road and at a higher elevation than street level, residents enter the house via a built-in four-car garage. On the main level, a small courtyard and large garden terrace on the south side provide an intermediate area where residents can enjoy the outdoor environment.
The kitchen is enclosed, and includes a bar counter so the family can eat as well as cook there. The kitchen is connected to the coffered-ceiling family room via a courtyard, lending both rhythm and depth to the space.
A low step leads to a hallway dappled with light and shadow from a skylight, and beyond that to the laundry room, master bedroom, and other private spaces.
All these rooms face the garden terrace on the south side, allowing the residents to spend as much time as they want outside without worrying about being seen by neighbors.