This house lies deep in mountain at an altitude of 600 meters. Though altitude isn’t that high, there wasn’t any reception of GPS nor cell phone signal, which made us more aware of its remote location. The young couple, who came to us for design of a house, looked like brother and sister. They were very delightful, always smiling. They had three dogs, no children, and liked outdoor activities like camping. The house they wanted was somehow different from a normal house.
Designing a house is to make a dream come true, and almost like making a new member for the family. A ‘family’ is a set of kind and reliable company to share life and protect each other from rainstorm. A house has to embrace this concept. The idea was to make a big cover to bring together various facts and elements of a residence. One concept comes into existence by gathering and synthesizing plenty of information from the land as well as incorporating all the hopes we want to instill.
There are things that make us laugh; an entertainment program on a leisurely Sunday afternoon, cute actions of a baby or a puppy, a small mistake or joke of a family. The most humane and cheerful house we think is a delightful house with endless big and small laughter, that make us forget fatigue, and lead us to a life with greater optimism.
The concept of this house is such ‘pleasure’ or ‘delight’. Since the couple enjoyed bicycle hiking and camping, they wanted to enjoy the house like a camping ground. They wanted to eat delicious foods together, watch amusing things, hang a hammock in a shade and take a nap, and prepare foods together in the kitchen facing each other.
Especially, they wanted a cozy roof garden to lie down and have a nap, like a scene in a Korean movie <Architecture 101>. And they also wanted to have it easy with their puppies. The house is made up of a pleasant small space like a playground and a spacious kitchen with a fine view which makes it easy for the family to get together and work. Usually we design the rooms first, and the living room and kitchen after, but we started from the kitchen in this house.
According to the lifestyle of the owner, we shaped the plan like a T shape to protrude the kitchen. There is an entrance on the wing part, and the kitchen is naturally placed in the protruded part. And in the kitchen, we put a large table including sink and dining table in the center to embody every process of preparing food, eating and relaxing. To let the view into the house from front, west yard, and entrance, we built windows on each three sides. They will put flowerpot or some ornaments on the horizontally-long east window, and communicate with the neighbor through the low wooden bench connected to the south window.
The west window with the most magnificent view is to go out to the yard and outside space. They can watch various landscape through the window; close neighborhoods as well as far landscape. We hid restroom, warehouse, and boiler room on the back side. Considering circulation inside the house, we connected the laundry room, the vestibule to the bathroom, and the bathtub, etc. The green forest behind the house is encased inside the big window in the bathroom. There is a bathtub for the puppies added in the bathroom.
Eventually, the inside of the house became a single space without doors. The living room and the bedroom are naturally connected by half-floor stairs. The stands next to the stairs are storages as well as a small theater to watch movies: they can project movies to the wall of the living room.
Each space is separated by different elevation, and the experiences inside the spaces are also different by the height. Accordingly, two rooftops were formed, one on the top of the kitchen and the other above living room. One is the roof garden for the wife, and the other is a space facing west to watch the sunset and meditate. The house resembled the delightful owners who enjoy life like a journey. It became a bright and cheerful house. As expected, the house takes after the owners.Location: Hoengseong, South Korea
Architect: Hyoungnam Lim, Eunjoo Roh in studio_GAON
Project Team: Minjung Choi, Sangwoo Yi, Seongwon Son, Sungpil Lee, Hanmoe Lee, Joowon Moon
Translation: Joowon Moon
Contractor: Atelier Architecture
Site Area: 1,981㎡
Building Area: 55.20㎡
Gross Floor Area: 96.91㎡
Building Scope: 2F
Building-to-Land Ratio: 8.9%
Floor Area Ratio: 15.63%
Structure: Reinforced Concrete Construction
Finish: Dressed brick, THK24 Thermopane
Design Period: 2012.6.20-2013.7.30
Construction Period: 2013.8.1-2013.11.30
Photographer: Hyosook Chin