Architecture

Energy-efficient luxury home built between a rock and a hard place

Energy-efficient luxury home b...
Villa Troglodyte's lower section is the original rock, while the upper area is made from concrete and artificial rock cladding
Villa Troglodyte's lower section is the original rock, while the upper area is made from concrete and artificial rock cladding
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Villa Troglodyte doesn't have many windows so most light inside comes from a large skylight in the roof
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Villa Troglodyte doesn't have many windows so most light inside comes from a large skylight in the roof
Villa Troglodyte's upper area opens onto a balcony
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Villa Troglodyte's upper area opens onto a balcony
Villa Troglodyte's floor is made from recycled wood
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Villa Troglodyte's floor is made from recycled wood
Villa Troglodyte's interior measures 500 sq m (5,381 sq ft), spread over five floors
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Villa Troglodyte's interior measures 500 sq m (5,381 sq ft), spread over five floors
Visitors enter Villa Troglodyte into a pool/reception area. A car garage with electric charging station is also nearby
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Visitors enter Villa Troglodyte into a pool/reception area. A car garage with electric charging station is also nearby
Villa Troglodyte's lower area is its most impressive and is meant to bring to mind an underground lake
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Villa Troglodyte's lower area is its most impressive and is meant to bring to mind an underground lake
Villa Troglodyte's lower section is the original rock, while the upper area is made from concrete and artificial rock cladding
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Villa Troglodyte's lower section is the original rock, while the upper area is made from concrete and artificial rock cladding
This glazed section is meant to bring to mind a natural rock fissure and provides some much needed-natural light inside Villa Troglodyte
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This glazed section is meant to bring to mind a natural rock fissure and provides some much needed-natural light inside Villa Troglodyte
Villa Troglodyte's bedrooms have en-suite bathrooms
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Villa Troglodyte's bedrooms have en-suite bathrooms
A photo of one of Villa Troglodyte's bedrooms
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A photo of one of Villa Troglodyte's bedrooms
Villa Troglodyte features a greywater recycling system
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Villa Troglodyte features a greywater recycling system
Villa Troglodyte's second floor features a kitchen and dining area, living room and the master bathroom
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Villa Troglodyte's second floor features a kitchen and dining area, living room and the master bathroom
Visitors enter Villa Troglodyte into a pool/reception area. A car garage with electric charging station is also nearby
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Visitors enter Villa Troglodyte into a pool/reception area. A car garage with electric charging station is also nearby

If you weren't looking closely, it would be easy to assume that the large lump of rock pictured is just a natural feature of the topography in Monaco. However, it's actually a remarkable energy-efficient luxury residence by Jean-Pierre Lott Architecte.

Bringing to mind the Antoine tiny house, though on a much larger scale, Villa Troglodyte's lower section is hollowed out of the original cliff face that was already on the site, with doors and windows cut into it, while the upper part is all new and made from concrete and artificial rock. Judging from the photos at least, the result looks authentic and it appears to be one large chunk of rock.

Visitors enter into a large reception room on the ground floor that contains a swimming pool. A garage with an electric charging station is also nearby. There's not a whole lot of glazing, though a skylight with automatic blinds is installed in the roof and sections of flooring are also glazed, to help the light permeate down to the ground floor.

The second floor, which is reached by stairs or elevator, contains a spacious living room, the master bathroom, and the kitchen and dining area. The remaining three floors contain bedrooms, each with an en-suite bathroom.

Villa Troglodyte's second floor features a kitchen and dining area, living room and the master bathroom
Villa Troglodyte's second floor features a kitchen and dining area, living room and the master bathroom

Though calling this house "green" would be pushing it, given the large amount of concrete used for its construction and its size, Villa Troglodyte does feature significant sustainable elements. Recycled wood from pilings used in mussel culture systems was used for the flooring and sustainably-grown wood was sourced for the doors and staircases. Additionally, cork was used for insulation and the roof is topped with a solar panel array that produces up to 1,400 kWh/year.

A greywater recycling system is installed to cut down on water use, and there's an energy-efficient geothermal heating and ventilation system too.

According to Jean-Pierre Lott Architecte, the home uses less than 40 percent the energy of a conventional French home and it has been awarded the Excellent Design Stage level of the British BREEAM certification (a green building standard).

Villa Troglodyte's floor is made from recycled wood
Villa Troglodyte's floor is made from recycled wood

Villa Troglodyte was completed a few months ago and also involved Atelier Raymond. We've no word on how much it cost to build, though Reuters reports that it's on the market and expected to fetch up to €40 million (roughly US$44 million).

Source: Jean-Pierre Lott Architecte

3 comments
guzmanchinky
Monaco is amazing, as is this home. But for that price I'd rather have one of the megayachts in the harbor...
Nelson Hyde Chick
This monstrosity is an architect's wet dream.
Worzel
So, where in this place do people actually Live? You know, bedrooms, wardrobes, bathrooms, WC, etc.