‘House in a House’ is the sustainable renovation of a terraced house from the 1980s in Wassenaars Spinbaanquarters. Our design challenge was to transform the dated and cramped residence into a bright, modern space with character, yet providing enough space for a family.
Renovation terrace house for private client
enlarging the house form 120 m2 to 160 m2 by adding a rooftop
Arthur Nuss and Tomáš Beránek
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The result is an open living space that makes smart use of the height of the house. Thanks to the rooftop structure and attic windows, another 40 m2 is gained, enabling light to stream into the center of the house.
Rugged materials with an unfinished but warm look were chosen for this renovation. The existing wooden floor at ground level was sanded down and oiled in a lighter color. For the kitchen we chose exposed concrete.
Comfort and the environment are the main themes of this renovation. The house is designed from an ‘integrated sustainability’ point of view. Passive solar energy, natural ventilation, heating and cooling are all managed in the atrium. By placing a ‘house within a house’, all rooms open up to the atrium. By closing or opening windows the rooms benefit from the warming and cooling qualities of the central space. This integrated system also creates a unique built environment.
This renovation includes the following features:
– Healthy living environment with natural ventilation and optimised light
– Reduced energy demand due to the use of insulating materials and good design
– Control of natural light through the use of blinds on the South side of the house
– The Atrium, retaining heat when required
– Solar panels for space heating / water heating
BNA, building of the year 2016
“House in a House” is the sustainable renovation of an existing 1980s terraced house in the Spinbaankwartier in Wassenaar. The project received an honourable mention during BNA’s best building of the year 2016. The jury was ecstatic about the courage this design shows; in these types of houses you rarely see such spaces being made. It shows that remodelling can yield much more than additional cubic meters or a higher insulation value; the architect has also created a great spatial experience. This is a sympathetic project, with great cooperation between the client and the architect. The honourable mention was received for the exemplary way in which a new kind of spatial experience has been introduced in a so-called “Bloemkoolwijk”.