Designing the Alley House was a unique challenge because of the restricted site situation and exaggerated linearity of the plot of 16m by 75m. The house is enclosed by two adjacent plots that restrict the main façade to not more than 16 meters at ground level, and not more than 13 meters above that level. Within the given dimensions the architects were asked to design five individual suites with maximized views to the beach from living spaces, and master bedrooms for the owner, his three sons and daughter.
The resulting strategy was to split the building into two interconnected volumes with bridges on the upper levels and an angled alleyway in between, and construct coordinated components that open yet give multiple shaded spaces as a very appealing passage in the heart of the complex. However, such a form would offer revelation and enigmatic moments of exploration and discovery for visitors. The propositions resemble an alleyway in which the services and public facilities are situated in the front (street) side, and the private components are located in the sea side, with anchoring views to the sea.
Moreover, this arrangement could create sufficient privacy for the family and visitors. This layout liberates the centers to create multiple shaded courtyard spaces, permitting inner views that provide a visual connection and natural lighting between the rooms at all levels. Furthermore, the narrow passageway in between becomes a pleasant shaded space with great wind-tunnel effect, to be utilized year round for various activities. The resulting insight of the design stems from a mesmerizing gentle and rapid movement imitating the dynamic of a natural alley. The angular turns in the building’s volumes maximize sea views. The front, sea-facing patio contains a sleek overflow pool and an attractive grass lawn.Location: Khiran Pearl City, Kuwait Architects: M2H Design Studio Project name: Alley House Principal architect in charge: Saman Maleknia
Design team: Madhusha Wijesiri, Esra Dashti, Abdulhafez Almujaibel, Noorah W. Hadeed.
Area: 1400 sqm
Year: 2012 Photographs: Courtesy of M2H Design Studio