Gentle hills in the area at the foot of Sljeme, a picturesque landscape and an almost rural atmosphere co-exist in a slight contrast with the developed and inhabited neighborhood of newly built family homes and residences. Even though at first glance the design and size of the House “V” may seem inappropriate to its surrounding landscape, the house found its foothold in a developed neighborhood. However, its design and careful integration with the landscape set it apart from the context of neighboring buildings.
A young married couple with two children wanted a family house with a swimming pool from which they could enjoy a view of the forest and use the terrain for different outdoor activities. Therefore, the house is situated in parallel with the street, has an elongated floor plan and takes a defensive position towards the street to which it opens only through small vertical glass windows in order to protect the inhabitants from unwanted views and noise. On the other side, the ground floor of the house opens towards a park with long horizontal sliding openings and draws nature inside.
The emphatic longitudinal plan of the house imposed an almost conceptual mastering of the house’s elements. Thus the entrance is logically placed at one end next to the garage, while the swimming pool is at the other end of the home. The space flows continuously from entrance to kitchen and dining area, passes through the living room, a work area, a gym and terminates at the swimming pool. The entrance to the house is unobtrusively characterized by a volume of massive wooden paneling, which conceals within itself several basic functions of the entrance area, such as a toilet and a dressing room, as well as a library that arises as soon as one enters the living room.
The living area is the most central and highest point of the house, and it is from here that one goes to the bedrooms. This is also a position from which the home’s dimensional progression changes; it is the truest site for spatial exploitation. An almost sculptural staircase made from massive oak and white MDF opens into an airy gallery at the upper level and creates a necessary counterbalance to the unpretentious remainder of the house.
The bedroom vicinity of the gallery is easily reached through a funnel-shaped corridor that leads into three children’s rooms and the parent’s consignment at the end. The interior is dominated by light tones of walls and wooden floors while the exterior of the house is a slightly darker plastered façade repeatedly punctuated by aluminum openings.
The outer terrace continues to follow the longitudinal shape of the house and is in direct contact with sliding glass outer walls on the ground floor enabling several exits to the landscape. The accentuated longitudinal design of the space is additionally heightened by a porch above the longitudinally placed terrace, which acts as both a veranda and an external living room area for the upper rooms.
The exquisite quality of the clean and vast meadow, marked on one side by the forest and the house on the other, preserves and intensifies its natural character without any additional landscaping.
The saying goes, “every child needs a meadow”. This meadow certainly has its children.
Location: Zagreb, Croatia
Program: interior, residential
Project team: Sasa Begovic, Marko Dabrovic, Tatjana Grozdanic Begovic, Silvije Novak, Paula Kukuljica, Koraljka Brebric Kleoncic, Romana Ilic
Project team collaborators: UPI 2M (structural engineer); MR konzalting (electrical engineering); Mario Josipovic (MEP engineering – mechanical); Nenad Sutevski, Vodotehnika (electrical engineering); MAKRO 5 (pool systems); Mateo Bilus (Building Physics/Details)
General contractor: VD gradenje
Project status: completed
Project start date: 2001
Project end date: 2005
Construction start date: 2005
Construction end date: 2008
Geo location: latitude 45°50’47.41″N, longitude 15°56’45.34″E
Project type: commission
Site area (m2): 3302
Size (m2): 599
Footprint (m2): 479