Patrick Zamariàn A multi-layered envelope, high-performance glazing and a photovoltaic installation on the roof significantly reduce energy expenditure in this luxury residence. The two apartments occupy an entire floor each and have access to spacious outdoor areas as well as a shared underground car park.
Embedded in a magnificent alpine setting, but Mediterranean in feel, House M2 on the outskirts of the South Tyrolean capital of Bozen echoes the cultural ambiguity of this German-speaking region in the northeastern part of Italy. Completed in 2012 by local practice monovolume architecture + design the structure comprises a full-size basement and two separate apartments, one on each of the two upper floors.
A Continuous wall, which passes parallel to the exterior walls, separates the night area from the day area.
Towards the access road to the north and east, the building presents itself as a compact volume punctuated by window openings. The south and west fronts, in contrast, boast extensive glass surfaces facing, respectively, the pool area at ground level and a large terrace on the upper story. An alteration in cladding material from light grey plaster to white Swisspearl fiber cement panels accentuates the two separate units in a building that might otherwise be misconstrued as a single-family home.
Both units are roughly square in plan; the upper one, however, is considerably smaller and shifted out of the centre, thus creating a stepped section and – in connection with cantilevering floor slabs – adding a strong horizontal emphasis to the building. The interior design mirrors the minimalist exterior with a combination of dark stone and hard wood floorings set against clinically white wall surfaces and kitchen fittings. Flush floor surfaces suggest a seamless transition from the living room to the outside areas, while slender black window frames, frameless glass railings and Italian design furniture add to the refined look of the apartments.
Although they are different sizes, the two units feature a similar layout based on a distinction between day and night zones. Arranged in an L-shape along the northern and eastern sides of the building, the ground floor accommodates two bedrooms, a study and two bathrooms as well as a private staircase leading to the underground car park. The living space overlooking the patio is divided into a generous dining kitchen to one side, and a lounge with fitted shelves to the other. The distinction between public and private spaces is clearly articulated in the upper apartment where an internal wall cuts through the entire length of the apartment, separating two bedrooms and a bathroom to the north from a large combined kitchen, dining and living space to the south.
House M2 has been awarded a category A classification by ClimateHouse, a regional agency that certifies buildings in terms of their energy consumption. Key sustainable features include the highly insulated envelope, rooftop photovoltaic panels and triple glazing throughout. The floors are composed of a thick layering of insulation materials, measuring nearly one metre between the ground floor and the basement and allowing the designers to carve out a lowered lounge zone without impacting on the ceiling heights underneath. Likewise, the area of the terrace immediately adjacent to the upper floor living room lies lower than the peripheral one, thus offering a great degree of privacy to both residents.
The plastered basement serves as pedestal for the smaller upper floor, which is covered by cladding sheets.
NICE TO KNOW
San Maurizio, Bozen, Italy
monovolume architecture + design (Patrik Pedó, Juri Pobitzer, Konrad Rieper; in collaboration with Simon Constantini, Luca Di Censo), Bozen, Italy
Meraner & Hauser OHG/SNC, Bozen, Italy
2011 – 2012
Trimont GmbH, Leifers, Italy
Swisspearl Carat Onyx 7090
PDF project sheet
Click here to download the project sheet