Nico van der Meulen Architects, based in South Africa’s larges city – Johannesburg – were commissioned to reflect the beauty of contemporary architecture in the structure of an existing South African residence. House The became a project of extensive renovations, creating an up-to-date version of the house, composed of steel construction and concrete framing elements used by the architects on other projects. The owner saw this beautiful adjoining of man-made forces shaping other residences and wanted to participate in this trend. Water features and light meet in a surreal architecture and landscape design, and interiors imagined by M Square Lifestyle Necessities capture the promise of a vivid, dynamic lifestyle. Green accents and sharp design lines create the perfect background for a fantastic social/family life.
The architects explain the transformation: “The new design was achieved by removing most of the internal walls on the ground floor and adding a porte cochere and a new lanai with an infinity edge pool. The impressive porte cochere is suspended from a semi-circular beam supported by the bisecting wall and a huge column and transfer beam over the pool. The element of water was added into the design with a koi pond to the north side of the existing lounge, with glass stepping stones that lead to a new pivoted glass front door. A small waterfall at the front door adds the welcoming sound of water, while a huge sheet of water is visible through a cut-out in the massive rusted steel wall bisecting the contemporary South African house to create a private pool area.”
What is new and exciting now can quickly begin to look tired and out of fashion, so the best buildings don’t just consider what will be interesting to look at now, but also how it might look to people in five, fifty or even a hundred years’ time. 2013’s hotly contested RIBA Stirling Prize went to Witherford Watson Mann Architects for their work on Astley Castle, Warwickshire. In what RIBA Past President Stephen Hodder has described as an extreme retrofit, the project essentially saw a new building inserted subtly into the heart of the old, with a new, two storey residence now hidden within the sandstone walls of the ruins of this medieval castle, to be used as a holiday home for up to eight guests
Inside the school, a wall made of cross-laminated timber separates classrooms from the main corridor, providing a space for storage and study. With very little to work with, the architects have managed to create a building that is much more than just the sum of all of its parts