The client -amongst many things a sun abider- envied the sun in the neighbour’s garden early February each year. So when he got the chance to buy the adjacent house, he planned a winter garden to be able to enjoy the sun rays as much as possible.
The design task thus consisted of designing a winter garden and a merging of the existing house with the just acquired house.
The existing house was built in 1929 by an apprentice of the famous Dutch architect Duiker and had been remodelled in 1981. In this design the living spaces followed each other up in chain and were divided by sliding doors, a clear design with a strong longitudinal character.
With the acquisition of the adjacent house, and the wish to connect both houses, the danger occurred that the clearness of the original design would be lost and result in chaotic organized spaces.
The design proposal therefore carefully planned a major cut through the kitchen wall, doubling the kitchen size into a lofty kitchen area with a cooking island and at the same time made the kitchen the central element of the new ensemble.
This wall opening of 6m length and 3m height, cut right through the bearing wall with two more apartments on top of it and a major operation for the contractor to execute properly.
The winter garden was connected to the house by pushing out the rear façade of the house, finish it through a glass wall and thus seamlessly connect it with the glass wall of the winter garden.
With this design decision, the winter garden became one of the ‘rooms’ of the house and simultaneous created a natural connection between house and garden; emphasized in the roof detail which showed an extension of the roof glass beyond its façade (à la Frank Lloyd Wright).
The construction profiles of the glass house where designed as slender as possible to maximize its transparency and lightness.
The kitchen as the central element in the house was accentuated with the placement of an expressive element, that at the one hand represented the function of a wall and at the other hand emphasized the transparency of the different spaces and thus stimulated communication (in its double function of cutting board and bar). The cutting plate is made of a 5cm thick glass sheet that ‘floats’ in space and is held at the end by only two steel legs.
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