London, United Kingdom
competition 1st Prize, 2015Collaboration: Anna Orłowska
‘A classic and well-judged representation of Architectural Beauty.
The Jurors expressed the view that the Modern Mansion appeared to be a platonic and archetypically beautiful house with a clear presence in the landscape. It represents a simple solution to structuring the requirements of the family, whilst tailoring a response to their specific likes, dislikes and needs.’
For me beauty lies in simplicity and reduction.
This project is an attempt to reinterpret the old theme of mansion and adjust it to contemporary aesthetical and functional needs. Design’s ambition was to create house that, while being luxurious, visually pleasing and great to live in, will be also devoid of all the things that are unnecessary. House that is not trying to follow passing fashion, but rather strives to create clear and solid presence in the landscape by using very simple means.Externally the mansion has an appearance of a simple, white, stone block, perforated by big openings. House has a solid, robust presence emphasizing ambition to create lasting, durable piece of architecture. This aspiration is also visible in the choice of materials – all facades are clad with big panels of white marble. More private parts of the building (i.e. swimming pool) are covered only with thin panels of this material – its translucency enables sun penetration while securing privacy.House has a very clear and simple spatial arrangement – all ‘living’ quarters (living room, kitchen and dining, study rooms, swimming pool and cinema) are placed on the ground floor, while all the bedrooms are located on the upper level. The whole two-storey block, dedicated to living and sleeping, rests on the sunken concrete podium containing auxiliary functions (garage, storerooms and man-cave).Spacious living room fuses with the surrounding greenery – almost 20 meter-wide sliding glass facade provides spectacular views to the landscape. All other living chambers (kitchen, dining, studies) allow direct access to the gardens, while bedrooms, situated on upper level, are connected with the landscape via wide floor-to-ceiling windows. House is crowned with vast roof terrace, accessible directly from the master bedroom. This space caters for elevated views reaching far beyond building’s plot.The heart of the house is a green patio – private area accessible only from the living room – place that allows total seclusion from the external world. The courtyard is filled with greenery – walls of the patio are fully glazed to visually connect the living room, swimming pool and all the corridors with this unique space.
Maciej Grelewicz Architects
We are driven by an aspiration to create unique works of highest architectural quality and we hope to find the same cravings in our clients. Our aim is to propose solutions tailored to the program, site, context, climate, budget and needs of each of our clients. We are based in Poland, but our experience of working abroad, gives us confidence in dealing with clients from different parts of the globe. Working with people from very diverse origins taught us the value of multicultural collaborations – we believe that they are not only mutually enriching, but can also lead to outstanding and often unexpected results. Our ambition is creating valuable architecture – opportunity to work on interesting project is way more important for us than its scale or location.
We want to make architecture that will last – we avoid using rhetoric or following recent trends, rather seeking for clear, rational and straightforward solutions. We pursue qualities that are timeless: simplicity, good proportions and attention to detail. Vitruvius, in his famous ‘The Ten Books on Architecture’, defined qualities that good architecture should posses: durability, functionality and beauty (‘firmitas, utilitas, venustas’) – we believe those values are as important today as they were two thousand years ago. We consciously aim for simplicity in our proposals. We don’t do it out of modesty or restraint – on the contrary, we believe that simple and honest building is stronger than the one that shouts and desperately seeks for attention.
Considering scarcity of resources, human influence on climate change and very high carbon footprint of building industry, we believe that it is essential to treat sustainability as integral part of design thinking. We implement this approach at the very beginning of design process, always starting with careful analysis of the plot to find the best possible building’s orientation and placement of openings. Sun is the cheapest and most pleasant radiator – we aim at making the best use of it, to limit dependence on costly external heating and cooling systems.
Piotrkowska 103/105 m.9
90-425 Łódź, Poland
T +48 667 040 815