The “Elle Maison” is a private house in Geneve outskirts. It’s located on an medium high plateau from which you can enjoy the view of the city and of the lake. The whole lot has an area of 830 square meters with an area destined to the building of 247 square meters. The plan is oriented north-south but the facade of the building moves on different axis. Starting from a central block the house has a performance offset as the lay of the land. The build is developed on three levels, the first and the second floor to be lived in, the basement floor is designed as a garage with two parking spaces. The first level is dedicated to the living area with the kitchen, the living room, a bathroom and a guest room, while the upper floor is dedicated to the sleeping zone with a main bedroom with bathroom and cloak room and a studio. The different levels are linked by a concrete stair, paved by white glossy Quartzite stones, in an unique open space from the entrance to the roof. In this area a fireplace welcomes family’s guests.
The roof is a garden level made of sedum that helps to reduce the impact with the environment and improves the energy efficiency of the villa. Attention is also spent for the external green around the house in fact there are different kinds of flowerbeds. Along the exterior stairs that going up to the living there are three big flower boxes made of Corten that contains trees, bushes and lavenders to give at the garden a good olfactory and chromatic sensations. All the external floors of terraces are made of grey Quartzite stones with a continue glass railing which structure is hidden under the terrace floor.
The building structure is set on reinforced concrete on continued foundation with septa and pillars. The floor is made with concrete covered with white tiles. The walls are made of two layers of bricks with in the middle the insulating layer. This project includes big windows made of insulated glazing with double glasses that open the view to the landscape and these frames are made of wood, the same used for some walls cover that characterized the building from the outside. In according to the local laws an airway was realized over the windows to improve the air circulation. The interiors ceilings are completely covered with plasterboard isolated with roller blinds tends flush with the big windows. The heating system is integrated in the floor.
1) Please tell me something about the owners (profession, nationality, hobby, previous place of living and why they decided to move), how big is the family (any children?), purpose of the house (permanent living/weekend/ summer house). Maybe the purpose has changed during work in progress?
The owners are a married couple of a scientist and a woman who works in international trade. Ofter a great job opportunity their decided to move from Italy to Geneve. This house is their refuge because they are very busy with their jobs.
2) Why they have chosen Damilano Studio to work with and what was the initial idea? Has something changed in your/their mind during projecting?
Their found Damilanostudio Architects looking for a contemporary architect. When we meet the first time we suggest to design an house with an open view to the landscape outside from the centre of the town and this idea was immediately accepted by the clients. Initially it was thought to build it in a plot near Geneve in the middle of a forest. After a plot research we found this plot.
3) Were there any funny/interesting cases connecting with the projecting/building?
The transparency of this house comes from the freedom spirit of the owner
4) What you/owner tried to reflect in this project? Any inspiration?
The spirit of peaceful living making a brak from the pace of work in this house open to the landscape.
5) What you/owner consider the biggest success in the Maison?
Clients feel well at home
6) Who was in charge of the interior? What (rare) materials were used? What are the brands of furniture and lighting?
Interior was designed by Damilanostudio Architects. We designed spaces, furnishing and lighting and after we made a choice based on our suggestion visiting showroom with clients. Damilanostudio decided to use different material to characterize interior and exterios spaces mixing natural material like stone and wood to tiles and corten. Wooden part was realized by Cobola Falegnameria while paintwork were done by Bertero. Mixed wood and different colour we harmonize the look of the facade. Principal lighting brand are Delta Light, Artemide and Foscarini. Principal furniture brand are Edra, B&B Italia, Boffi Cucine, Mdf, Tubes (radiator), Gallotti & Radice
7) What is seen from the terrace (geographically)? How long is drive to Geneva?
Geneve is 10 km far. From the house you can see Mont Blanc and alps mountain and your view is open to Swiss/France hills
8) Some words about the garden around the house.
The Garden was realized with Roagna Vivai. Since the house is on the hill there are different levels of the garden linked by big corten vase with plants inside. The design of the garden was studied mixing grass, dark gravel and different plants with the intention to have different colors and scents in different areas of the garden
9) What wood was used for facade? How many sq meters of glass were used?
Totally there are 125 sqm of windows. Most of them on the view and sun site. The wood part was made of Paraiso, a south american chestnut.