Cattolica || Italy
The small parcel of land on which this complex stands is wedged between the neighbouring buildings, resulting in space limitations that influenced the design of this house with three storeys above ground, a basement floor and a roof terrace. The building plane follows the rectangular shape of the parcel, but leaves a narrow stretch along the side borders to create, with the thick vegetation, a touch of a barrier between the properties. The regulations governing required space between edifices and the small size of the property effectively meant the lateral facades had to be blind walls, bar a few small openings to allow air circulation and natural light for the bathrooms. Consequently, the key external architectural features are the large windows on the road and rear-facing facades.
This house actually has three residential units.
The first is on the ground floor, with the entrance on the north-east side. The bedrooms are in the rear and the living area and kitchen are in an L-layout because of the space needed for the car lift. Adopting this plan allowed direct access to the lift from the road and thus the basement garage, without needing to include a ramp that would have been rendered impossible by space constraints. The other two residential units are on the first and second floors, in a duplex layout. The internal staircase is a simple metal structure with nautical overtones that creates an interesting combination with the glazed slabs used for the actual steps. The entrance to reach the upper floors is on the west side, via a side corridor allowing direct street access. There is then a shared staircase that leads up to the individual first-floor entrances.
These two units mirror each other, with one on the south-west side overlooking the street and the other at the rear of the building. The bedrooms are on the lower level and the upper floor is the living area and kitchen. The top floor also has an internal staircase to the "summer" roof terrace that has wooden strip flooring. Parquet was favoured for the indoor floors.
The clear parallelepiped volume of this building stands out from the adjacent ones and is divided between the reinforced concrete of the basement floor and part of the ground floor, and the upper floors characterised by the continuity of the light coloured larch strips used on all the facades. The windows for the first floor bedrooms and the openings to provide ventilation for the bathrooms have shutters with wooden strips that match the rest of the cladding.
When these are closed the building really looks like a single, wooden block, only broken by the second floor windows that disrupt the horizontal pattern.
Location: Cattolica, Rimini
Gross Floor Area: 1.500 m2
Architects: Ghiradrelli Architetti – Giancarlo Ghirardelli
Design Team: Delphine Chouaib, Ferdinando Savio Flores
Photography: © Valentina Bove
Ghirardelli ArchitettiDa più di vent’anni, l’arch. Giancarlo Ghirardelli e il suo studio operano nel settore dell’architettura e del design, avvalendosi dell’esperienza maturata nello stretto rapporto di collaborazione con preziose competenze industriali e artigianali. Attraverso un’attenta opera di composizione (e scomposizione) di luce, spazio e materia, dosati con cura in un processo fortemente ispirato, prendono forma le atmosfere e gli ambienti.