The project is a rehabilitation of a 6-floor building with 90 apartments, which you cannot see from the ridge, since it is down against the cliff. It also includes building an extension of 40 apartments where an old city garage was, on the road accessible plateau.
The residency is located in a unique environment: above Monaco city. It offers a panoramic point of view, facing the sea on the South. The extension was designed naturally following the existing building, it uses the same carving facade, the same frame, to shape its volume, but rotates by 90°. In doing so, it faces South and is backed by the existing topography. What is at stake is that is both minimizes the visual impact of the building in the landscape as much as it prevents vis-à-vis with public spaces.
The extension is a 3-floor horizontal volume with outdoor passages located north of the site, next to the cliff.
Carving the facade’s volume allows privacy for the inhabitants as much as it splits the overall volume of the building for it to match natural topography. The thick façade of the apartments creates a balcony above the sea for each one of them and also controls the sunlight quantity during summer. Having a single direction for the building also allows the implementation for transverse ventilation in the apartments, between the balconies and the passage on the cliff.
The facade embodies how the building was designed, in a strict opposition between opaque gables and wide windows on the façade. The west-gables create an anamorphic fresco which can be appreciated from the ridge. According to where one stands, it appears to be either one unified drawing of fragmented shapes.
Once again, it was using a traditional material that influenced the design of these gables made out of earthenware. The traditional azulejos did not have proper certifications for an outdoor use. It was then necessary to develop our own faïence with the craftsman. They were made in a traditional way but with a modern pattern. This was an opportunity to design patterns whose combination creates diverse geometrical shapes using various scales.