Houzz Tour: A Hillside Family Home with Timber and Concrete Details
Open and spacious, every room in this hillside house has a mood of its own, enhanced by the tactile materials, large windows and leafy views
This plot is the only one to remain untouched among a residential zone formed by land readjustment around 40 years ago, and with Fujisawa City owning the sloping green tract of land extending on the site’s south and east sides, it’s expected to remain undeveloped for the foreseeable future.
Who lives here A married couple and their two children
Property Tsujido House is a two-storey timber and steel building
Location Fujisawa City, Kanagawa Prefecture, Japan
Architect Naoi Architecture & Design Office
Size Site area: 2,641 sq ft (245.41 sq m); total floor area 1,606 sq ft (149.26 sq m)
Completed April 2015
Photos by Hiroshi Ueda
The site is a complex pentagon shape with a gentle slope. Exploiting these features, the building is a two-wing configuration sitting north and south and designed to bring together its different levels. Viewed from outside, the two house-shaped structures, one large and one small, have a playful appearance, slightly askew and overlapping, while walls combining grey plasterwork and antique brick fit in perfect harmony with the green surroundings.
The custom-made lattice windows have painted wooden sashes with a grid size calculated to showcase the beautiful scenery. “Making the architecture a filter for observing nature is a way to bring the landscape that makes the place so special into the home. That’s why we chose lattice windows,” Katsutoshi says.
The south wing exploits the terrain with a portion about 1.1ft to 1.5ft (35cm to 45cm) below ground. Sitting at the dining table next to the window to admire the eye-level view of the sky and garden feels like floating amid the greenery. Sitting at the kitchen worktop to enjoy a meal offers a generous view of the garden and surrounding landscape in front of the home, too.
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It has a floor about 1.1ft (35cm) above the ground, making the living room about 2.5ft (70cm) higher than the dining room. While there are no walls or doors between the two spaces, the difference in height imposes a kind of soft partition on the space and also adds depth.
In contrast to the double-height space of the dining room, the living room is a tranquil and relaxing space with a ceiling no higher than 7.5ft (2.3m), a scheme that creates a different mood and pace. The steps installed where the levels split also serve as casual seating for the dining area.
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In the same way, the hallways connecting different parts of the home have concrete floors finished in mortar that seem to naturally extend to the space outside, as well as large windows on both sides that bring in light and wind to give them the feeling of a garden path.
The right side of this photo shows the bathroom and washroom. The left side shows the dining room and kitchen. The hall between the two defines the different areas and stands apart as the space for moving from one room to another.
Since this part of the home is lower than ground level, the front terrace is accessed by going up the steps and passing through the door.
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