HOUSE IN THREE BUILDINGS
The house comprises of three separate buildings, each with a different function. The positioning of the buildings at different angles defines multiple visual trajectories, emphasizing the perspective of the intervening spaces, enhancing residents’ privacy.
The house is set on a hillside to the north of Varkiza 700 meters from the sea. The southern part of the Saronic Gulf stretches to the South; the foothills of Mt. Hymmetus to the North. The surrounding area includes some wooded parts and is sparsely built.
The house comprises of three separate buildings, each with a different function. A central building accommodates all common areas: sitting room, kitchen, dining and library. The northern building contains bedrooms on the first floor and the architect’s studio at basement level. The southern building is an independent guest-house.
This breakdown allows, at a purely functional level, for the isolation of different activities and protects residents’ privacy. The first view of the buildings from the compound’s entrance reflects their relative function and importance: the central building acquires increased weight while only the short side of the bedroom building is visible. The entry gaze thus focuses on the main building and on the square between it and the guesthouse, which remains visible at the background.
The positioning of the buildings at different angles defines multiple visual trajectories.
These angles, created by the axis of each building, emphasise the perspective of the intervening spaces. The above are enhanced by the symmetry and morphological independence of each building.
The breakdown of the house into three buildings therefore privileges exterior spaces. Outdoor life, mobile or stationary, becomes a composing element of the residence. The central building, the guesthouse and the pool define a square with a view to the sea that funcions as an open-air sitting and dining room. The communication among the buildings is carried out to a large extent under the open sky, through walkways that traverse or surround the central building.
Opening to the four points of the horizon, the main building becomes a communication junction and a meeting-point. An inclined walkway leads from the main entrance to the central building from where one can reach the other buildings. The North – South axis, connecting the bedrooms with the square and the guesthouse, passes through the central building.
This building complex is inspired by the idea of creating a private residence using proportions and materials belonging to the vocabulary of public, monumental architecture.