Dutch firm MVRDV recently unveiled Casa Kwantes: a luxury pad that has a brick facade with few windows facing the street for privacy and a large curved glazed facade facing the courtyard that offers plenty of light. Envisioned as a contemporary take on 1930s modernist design, the enviable home also boasts energy-efficient technology, including solar power.
The 480 sq m (5,166 sq ft) family house is spread over two main floors, plus a small basement. It's located in west Rotterdam, the Netherlands, and the layout was designed in close collaboration with the owners to best suit their needs.
The first floor includes a two-car garage, kitchen, living room, dining room, and library. The living room has a long fitted wooden unit that runs the length of the entire wall and includes storage cabinets, in addition to basement and guest bathroom access. The second floor includes two bedrooms with en-suite bathrooms.
Naturally, the unusual shape of the glazed facade means that the interior layout of the home is pretty unconventional. Still, from the photos at least, it appears to work well and allows ample natural lighting while maintaining privacy from passersby on the road. The curving shape also offers a visual link between different areas of the house and, in a nice touch, wraps around an olive tree.
"The curved glass continuously wraps its way around the interior facade on both levels creating continuous views from one room to another," explains MVRDV co-founder Jacob van Rijs."As well as a visual connection, an exterior balcony also creates the opportunity to easily walk from one space to the next without disruption. The glass reflections of the central tree continuously change and bounce around as one moves throughout the house and changes their perspective."
Though Casa Kwantes is connected to the grid, its roof sports a large solar panel array. MVRDV says the home may prove entirely self-sufficient in electricity – this will be tested in the coming year. A ground-source heat pump transfers heat to and from the ground and, in conjunction with a heat exchanger, provides energy-efficient heating and cooling.
Casa Kwantes was completed in 2016.