by Jincy IypeNov 11, 2021
A dipping timber and steel overhang outlines the architecture of the Fold House, a robust dwelling that “folds” into the hillside contours in Southern Ontario, Canada. Designed by Partisans, the structure encompasses an elegant, neat pool and wood lined, spacious living spaces. The pool pavilion rests on the lower part of the slanting hill, its dip hosting an external staircase that step on to the oak lined roof, rising to meet the two-storey guesthouses at the far end.
The residential architecture features a green roof that blends into the landscape, and a 24.3 m long and three m tall south facing, sliding glass façade that provides encompassing views, and opens into a trimmed garden. “The undulating structure disguises the 27 m steel structural beam that creates a cantilevered canopy, making the front of the pavilion appear as though it is floating,” shares the Toronto-based studio. The sweeping roof that houses the swimming pool creates a light filled, cavernous entrance and lobby space that diverges toward the door at the back and a corridor that leads into the guesthouse ground floor.
Partisans reveal that the client lost his family home a few years back to a fire, and they rebuilt it into this retreat. They also explain that in order to decrease environmental impact due to new construction, a 3D scan was done to fine tune the structure’s positioning and processes.
The dramatic curved roof and beige interior surfaces are built with compression-bent wood, “an artisanal fabrication technique typically used on furniture and musical instruments, and rarely deployed at this scale. The roof has a significant wave-like curvature that is visually striking from the exterior of the building as well as from the inside of the pool room, opening up space to cradle the cascading external staircase and creating a sculptural slope in the white oak ceiling of the pool room,” explain co-founders of Partisans, Alexander Josephson and Pooya Baktash.
The stacked, rounded guesthouses are clad in vertical wooden strips, with windows placed in a checkerboard pattern to maximise sunlight received across seasons, and reduce solar gain during summers. Timber also dominates most of the residential design, including three bedrooms and the kitchen area on the lower floor. One out of the four attached bathrooms here presents a fresh pop of colour with a backdrop of jewel green square tiles and fittings with accents of gold.
Name: Fold House
Location: Southern Ontario, Canada
Area: 415 sqm
Year of completion: 2020