by Zohra KhanJan 05, 2021
Designed for a family in search of a new lifestyle in the port city of Itajaí, Brazil, the architecture firm Schuchovski Arquitetura has created a modern abode for their needs. The design attempts to create an atmosphere of belonging and identity, offering panoramic views of the sea, using important elements of Brazilian-ness through eco-friendly construction. In its core architectural concept, the project is set to meet the needs of the house owners by merging their lifestyles and ideas.
Located in the midst of an Atlantic forest hill that overlooks the sea, much attention was paid to the architectural insertion into the topography of the land, that resulted in an implantation with closed angles on the corner. Two edges of the terrain converge at the highest visual point of the house, offering a scenic view. With the city and the preserved forest in the background, coupled with the view of the beach, the house offers a feeling of welcome-ness and well-being with its wide living areas and integration with the surroundings.
By bringing the element of glass and the boldness of the vertical stroke to create clean visual lines with the main access and the horizontal façade, an architecture of high visual impact for the façade was developed. In response to the challenge of occupying the tip of the land, a pool was designed that in turn created a garden below.
Further, climatic factors have been studied to ascertain the correct geographic location of the openings and eaves, extracting the greatest benefit of comfort and durability of the construction. The mix of materials and colours positively influenced the enhancement of the Brazilian culture in addition to the plurality of references that reflected the residents’ travels across the world.
Here, STIR speaks with the team at Schuchovski Arquitetura to get deeper insights into the project.
Meghna Mehta (MM): Could you tell us what was the brief provided for the project?
Schuchovski Arquitetura (SA): The client, a cosmopolitan couple, with two children, wanted to use the tip of the land, where they could have a free and wide view of the sea. These spaces would be focused on contributing to the family's routine, promoting facilities and meetings to favour relationships. It was also a desire to imprint a sense of Brazilian-ness and references of their trips to different countries into the architecture. In order to allow rest and contemplation, they wished for the spaces to connect them with nature.
MM: How do you believe the house takes complete advantage of the context? How did the firm try to maximise on the location?
SA: The house is a construction inserted in a multitude of visuals; the city, the hill, the beach, the sea and the preserved Atlantic Forest. By taking advantage of this environment, we positioned the main social area at the end of the land, which has a panoramic view. The block at the front has the pool that surprises the eye for having a single attachment point made possible due to the pre-stressed structure. Directly above it lies the master suite, which offers the primary views of the residence.
MM: What were the key challenges the team faced during the design process and construction?
SA: Deploying the residence on a terrain with almost 11 meters of unevenness was one of the main challenges - especially the area that is formed on the corner, at the tip, where lies a beautiful panoramic view. Creating an interesting volumetric form in this arrangement was also equally challenging. Offering optimum sunlight and openness while preserving family privacy was also strategic and intricate.
MM: As we discuss the sunlight, what are the other sustainability features applied here?
SA: We conducted a study to derive the best position in terms of the geographic location of this residence that explores the climatic factors. These factors have been employed to extract the greatest benefit for the architectural project, considering the functionality, the comfort of the inhabitants and the durability of the construction.
Construction elements such as the eaves, the green roof and the ventilated façade maximise the impact on the result of thermal and solar comfort. Photovoltaic panels and storage batteries guarantee a self-sufficient home from an energy point of view.
MM: How did you deal with these challenges of the land and the angles used for the house?
SA: We used the tip of the land to raise the house, extending areas such as the pool and the master suite to the highest altitude for contemplating the sea and the surrounding forest. We valued elements of architecture by creating circulations that provide residents with a unique promenade. Dismissing the orthogonal quality of walls, we created a volume of glass angled in relation to the main facade, eliminating any element of monotony.
MM: The form of the building appears unique, how and why was this derived?
SA: Respecting the local guidelines, we camouflaged the building in order to enhance the landscapes. Using elements and aspects of contemporary architecture, we used pure elements, minimal design and horizontal lines to enrich and enhance the prominence of the vistas. Through parametricism, they carry originality and authenticity.
Name: Panoramic House
Location: Itajaí, Brazil
Project size: 1200 sqm
Site size: 1065 sqm
Completion date: 2020
Architects: Schuchovski Arquitetura
Project team: Eliza Schuchovski, Juliana Freitas, Júlia Sampaio, Isabella Borsato, Natália Cunha e Bruna Gregorini