"we specialize in connecting and re-connecting people to their surroundings "

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DUINHUIS I  |  nl

This one-level holiday home has been designed to gracefully blend into the landscape of the steep slopes of the Dutch dunes.

In plan, the spatial organization is defined by three main volumes, stepping into the topography and addressing three main functions: resting (sleep) / outdoor / living. The planar staggering of the volumes ensures that each room benefits from a view of the Northern Sea's wild landscape, ranging from the vast, panoramic views of the living area to unexpected 'peaks' towards the surrounding landscape from areas such as the main bathroom. A perpendicular wall to the direction of the volumes unifies the structure visually but divides/ organizes the programme into main spaces on one side and auxiliary on the other (services/storage/work). 

The bare, reinforced concrete allows not only for the cantilevering floors and generous overhangs, but it is low maintenance, addressing the volatile climate of the coast in terms of wind and humidity levels. This choice of material is symbolic for the notion of permanence, for the basic human desire/need to settle and put down roots. Nevertheless, the 'weight' and 'durability' of this material finds itself in direct contrast to the context of the beach as a place defined by impermanence, by erosion and constant movement. It was our intention to unify these considerations into a design that speaks to the need of privacy and protection and yet creates an open and relaxed spatial sequence, one that gently unfolds as the topography slopes towards the sea. The vertical wooden elements are intended to bring warmth and balance out the coolness of the concrete while creating dynamic shade patterns in key areas of the structure. The brick accents unify the structure visually, giving a nod to the local bricklaying techniques.

The interior palette complements the overall lightness and warmth of the exterior. The living and kitchen areas, located in the third and lowest volume overlooking the water have been inspired by the murky, underwater world of the Northern Sea and bring together a collection of rich tones (dark ceiling, teak cabinetry, deep-blue furnishings). The apparent 'heaviness' of this palette is elevated through a selection of reflective, playful lighting fixtures and the light, flowing veil curtains reminiscent of the seawater foam that regularly washes up on the local shorelines. From an interior perspective, the curtains reveal the 'spectacle' of the sea every time they are pulled away, while from an exterior perspective, they bring an overall softness to the sharpness and hardness of the concrete.

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