The restoration of a former light industrial building in the historic center of Faenza
Casa Gottardi, designed by Alessandro Bucci Architetti, combines recollections of the past with contemporary solutions to create a stimulating formal dialogue.
This former light industrial building has been transformed into a home with contemporary style and an emphasis on its materials. The existing structure served as a container for the new house, which comprises open areas, bright spaces, customized furnishings, premium finishes, and materials that – partly left as-is and partly reclaimed – preserve the raw, natural look of the original.
The house occupies two above-ground floors and a basement level, restyled as a tavern. There’s also a private yard. The exterior of the building has been improved with the street elevation redesigned and a contemporary reinterpretation of the elevation facing the yard, in which the large arched windows of the old workshop and the brick vaults of the gallery are now features.
Occupying the old workshop area itself, the ground-floor living area is the most emblematic part of the project. The area has been converted into an open space, characterized by furniture specially designed to complement the sections of the original building that have been retained. The kitchen combines metal and wooden furniture, with an accent on the texture of its materials. Its ceiling, which has been left exposed, retains the original vaulting with metal supports. The antique transmission shaft once used to drive the workshop machinery has been incorporated into the ceiling as a decorative feature. The large arched windows allow natural light to enter, while recalling the building’s industrial origins. Their original iron frames have been recovered and reset into the wall in front of the new thermal break windows.
The first floor, the sleeping area, is the most private part of the house. It’s accessed via new internal stairs that run up an exposed stone wall. Reaching over thirteen feet (4m) at its highest point, this narrow, elongated staircase marks an almost hidden path to the open space office on the first floor. The underside of the pitched timber roof – partly retained, partly rebuilt from scratch – has been left exposed and painted white. The upstairs floors are oak, while the walls have been painted white with the doors set flush to them.
The basement has been restored and restyled as a tavern with a large wine storage area. This atmospheric space is enclosed by exposed stone surfaces and a barrel vault ceiling in exposed brick. The restoration of the basement began with the design of reinforced concrete stairs, followed by the restoration, cleaning, and restyling of the space itself. All of the exposed brick walls were sandblasted to highlight their texture.
Location: vicolo Gottardi, Faenza (Ra), Italia
Gross Floor Area: 250 m2
Architect: Alessandro Bucci Architetti
Projects Team: Silvia Ancarani, Barbara Assirelli, Enrico Bertozzi, Gabriele Convertino, Diletta Bracchini, Enrico Ferraresi, Elisa Fontana, Filippo Govoni, Luca Landi, Elena Mambelli, Stefano Martinelli, Francesca Mura, Simona Tartaglia, Michele Vasumini
Structural project: Marco Peroni Ingegneria, Faenza (Ra)
Systems: Studio Energia, Faenza (Ra)
Construction company: Impresa Ferrara Salvatore, Faenza
Photography: © Pietro Savorelli
Windows: Secco Sistemi