New Zealand’s designed the Wairau Valley House in Rapaura, set amidst a rustic melange of farms, orchards, vineyards and the nearby Wairau River winding through the landscape. The clients wanted a house with a connection to the land, both in terms of its layout and its materials. Here’s what the architects did to bring that vision to life.
To keep a connection to the land, the architects created this house as a series of interconnected pavilions, giving residents the chance to experience the landscaped grounds as they make their way from one living space to the next. Expansive glazing opens up the house while inviting the outdoors in.
The concrete facade sits close to the ground, topped by a low pitched roof which gives this single-storey home an intimate ranch-house look and feel. Mountains tower in the distance, a breathtaking focal point on the horizon.
The heavy concrete walls make their way indoors, and coupled with eucalyptus wood, they give the house a strong sense of rustic yet refined nature. Of course, the floor-to-ceiling windows do a great job of bringing nature indoors as well.
Inside, the low gabled ceilings and walls are finished in this rich multi-toned wood spilling up from the floors, washing interiors with a warm wave which you can only find at home. The open concept layout enhances the home’s sense of space, allowing its residents to enjoy its wonderful interior features and outside views from any point in the house.
Interior furnishings echo this wood and concrete palette, with stone kitchen countertops, simple wood pieces and grey upholstered seating defining the different living spaces within the open layout.
And what house is complete without a fireplace? Well, this house has two! A concrete fireplace in the living room and a wood-burning stove in the kitchen are the perfect finishing touch.
Photo credit: Paul McCredie