Situated in the backyard of an existing house in the center of Ghent lies a hidden treasure, surrounded by university buildings, old towers, a Cathedral and even the famous “Boekentoren” of Henry Vandevelde.
The owners wanted to build a house with large glass windows that guarantee an open view of the garden. But at the same time they wanted a cozy, warm place to live in. A project in which interior and exterior would be inextricably connected. Our studio took care of both architecture and interior design and the final result is what we call ‘The cozy glass house’.
Because the location of the new volume is surrounded by closed building volumes we could not use a traditional way of building. Lifting materials like steel, wood, glass over the high, existing building and subsequently putting everything together on-site was the only solution. That’s why we created a structure with a grid of wooden columns and large glass surfaces. Its composition of vertical and horizontal slabs gives the building a timeless and quiet character.
The concrete terrace structure – as an extension of the interior – communicates with the different levels in the old garden and perfectly integrates the house in its environment.
By using different levels and heights, all the spaces on the first floor have different dispositions. The kitchen is conceived as a large multifunctional space. The living room and dining corner, with integrated benches, are situated around a central fireplace. The intimate media room is located in a former bunker volume. The tasteful combination of materials such as wood, carpeting, tadelakt, cemented recuperated bricks,… gives the interior a warm feeling.
The glazed bedrooms and bathrooms are situated on the second floor and are connected with a central closet room. From these rooms, the views on the garden, rooftop gardens and surroundings are even more explicit.
Additionally, at night when all the lights are on, the building transforms into a movie set that might as well be located in California or Los Angeles. The building becomes a light object.
All details such as the basic structure, windows, furniture, door handles, sofas, … are carefully designed by Steven Vandenborre architects and give the project its unique, one-off character.