Summer House

Summer House

Architect
couvelas/kouvelas
Location
Gavrio, Greece | View Map
Project Year
2003
Category
Private Houses
Erieta Attali

Summer House at Andros Island

couvelas/kouvelas as Architects

The property is located in the middle of a steep hillside, the only landmark in the area being the old lighthouse on the southern edge of the slope.

 

The special characteristics of the landscape as well as the brief led to a solution of splitting the house into three independent smaller volumes. The different functions are “scattered” rather than squeezed in a single unit in the middle of the grounds on an extensive uphill, bared of trees.

 

The in-between void is embodied within the massive volumes and forms the centrepoint of the composition, linking the three building blocks into a coherent whole. In this way, the open space acts as a dynamic compnent shaping areas protected from the prevailing north winds, shaded court yards, and covered or open alleyways. It marks out the diverse views, invites and leads to places, while each of the three units becomes a new reference point for the other two.

 

Solids and voids are in a dialogue that relates to the landscape of the island and its traditional local architecture. The pattern echoes the Andriotic settlements, which are characterized by a rather loose formation with absence of connecting parts between buildings that stand detached. Moreover, it does echo the morphology of the island where ravines alternate ridges on their sloping route towards the sea. It also alludes to the scattered reefs around the bay detaching the endless water surface thus creating a new “topos”.

 

Out of the rough schist shell, treated as a continuation of the ground, emerge the three main volumes. Their construction is conventional, with concrete, bricks and plaster. Their rendered skin, less rough than schist walls, has the warm colors of the surrounding earth, deep red, ochre and gray.

 

The internal surfaces of plaster are treated with spatula to provide a smooth effect. The bathrooms are lined with marble in shades of pink, while floors are covered with oak planks. Warm and inviting internal spaces are formed reflecting those of sea shells; rough outside, smooth and soft inside. Thus, the house was also regarded as a natural creation of man, alluding to the way a mollusk secretes its shell.We tried, in short, to create a miniature world in which nature is the true genius.

 

Material Used:

1. Reinforced Concrete - Bearing Structure

2. Local Schist Stone - Walls Cladding, Free-Standing Walls And Columns

3. Local Schist Slates - Landscape And Shaded Courtyards

4. Natural Oak Planks - Interior Floors

5. Natural Pine - Doors, Windows, Pergolas

6. Marble Slates - Bathrooms

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