Inspired by liberal theories of mid-century architects like Lina Bo Bardi and Aldo van Eyck, Namelok designed House 1 as a perfect base for a young and modern family. Namelok’s take on the family’s wishes translated in three design principles: the kitchen as the beating heart, openness through horizontal and vertical connections and visible constructions vs. tangible textures.
The house, overlooking a typically Dutch polder landscape with the skyline of Rotterdam at the horizon, consists of a rough base topped with an asymmetrical timber box. The house stands in line with the elongated plot, leaving space for terraces and a garden around. The three main materials used in the exterior – coarse plaster, vertical western red cedar slats and frost grey bricks – work perfectly together by defining and uniting different parts of the house. For example, the brick chimney features both an exterior and interior fireplace and connects the garden terrace to the living area. Even more, the chimney functions as a wall in one of the bedrooms, visually linking it to the rest of the house.
The interior of the house is built around the spacious kitchen/living area. Here, a carefully framed view acts as a beautiful landscape that looks like it’s painted by a Dutch Master from the Golden Age. The open and light kitchen area extends all the way up to the roof, through the wide vide. This is in great contrast with the sitting room on the other side of the chimney: an intimate, dim place for more quiet nights with the family. By giving character to the different spaces in the house, the house itself gets an identity that fits the residents.
The second floor consists of two bedrooms, one standalone bathroom and one en suite master bedroom. The traditional timber roofing gives a lot of warmth to the speaking yet minimalistic designed rooms, connected through a corridor that leads along the vide and patterned glass window.