The blue house
The house from 1920 is a freestanding house set in a long and narrow lot in between two streets. The land size is 307 m2. The typology is a brick cottage with hipped tiled roof and veranda on the front entry. The original house of 2 bedrooms and living area had already been extended at the rear in the early 50ies with a new living area, kitchen, 1 bedroom and a bathroom. External toilet and shower stand under the rear verandah; all covered by a corrugated metal roof. Before the intervention, this brick house was in very poor conditions: damp everywhere in the walls and ceilings, holes in the floor, termites under the floor structure, damaged fireplaces, damaged windows, rotten timber structure, rusted corrugated metal roof… The new intervention had transformed 3 bedrooms, 1 bathroom and 1 outside toilet, into 4 bedrooms, 3 bathrooms and 1 studio house. It comprises: • Demolition of the rear toilet and shower in poor sanitary conditions • Demolition of the rear verandah and interior partition walls excluding the 2 entry bedrooms. Their originals decorations have been restored. • Rear addition including folding glazed door on the north-east side and fixed windows on the north-west side. Here set the open kitchen, the living area and new stairs to the added first floor • Creation of two new bathrooms at the ground level: ensuite for the 3rd bedroom and main one. • Addition of new first floor at the rear of the house that includes a master bedroom with ensuite, walk-in-wardrobe and a studio with terrace overlooking the rear garden. Whilst the original part of the house has kept the tiled gabled roof, the first floor addition is covered with a metal roof. The interior finishes are the result of research of new materials, lighting and colors that have an important role in the project. The living area and the kitchen are dominated by the bright turquoise color of the smooth floor on cement based material. Everything around is white to leave to the floor the “first role`. Only the recessed alcoves for the television and the boxed shelves ending both side of the kitchen are painted in dark sparkling blue creating a strong visual contrast with the white walls. The splash back of the kitchen reminds the floor using the same material. The stair has been treated like an object: the treads matching the timber floor upstairs, it’s wrapped by glass walls helping the light to go through and giving the impression of a light object. Each of the three bathrooms has been treated in a different way according to its role. The ensuite in one of the child’s bedroom (the girl’s one) has flower motives in light blue and white colors. It makes a simple but at the same time calm atmosphere. The bathroom between the bedrooms and the leaving area has his access from the corridor and wants to be a representative bathroom: the white smooth wash plane is underlined by a mirror and silver tiles that reflect the light. The side panel of the bathtub is made in the same acrylic smooth material. The ensuite of the master bedroom at the first floor reminds the gold sparkling color of the bedroom feature wall. All the basins and planes of the bathrooms are made of white acrylic surface, which give a very smooth feeling. The monotony of the long entry corridor linked to the shape of the house, has been broken by the turquoise color of the floor with dark blue accents. Recessed wall lights at floor level and at 2 m height contribute to this effect. All floors in the bedrooms and first floor are covered with whitewashed oak with a brushed surface that helps to make the atmosphere of these spaces warm and cozy. Each space has a different light fitting according to the color and typology of the space. Pendant lights are predominant in the height ceiling of the original part of the house. The entire idea of the project is to maintain and restore the beautiful and original feature of an old house using modern materials and create a completely modern and contemporary space in the new area to accent the contrast between old (traditional) and new (contemporary).


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