NAX-Report 03/18: NAX-Partner Schüco: House X, Singapur

NAXNAX Netzwerk Architekturexport-Partner Schüco:

House X in Singapore: Open to light and landscape

Khoo Guojie, Singapur

Bielefeld. The architecture of a private home in Singapore plays with extreme contrasts of seclusion and transparency in the façade areas. Whilst almost opaque on its public side, every room on the south-west side of the building opens up a view of a spectacular natural panorama and the generous outdoor facilities. In order to make experiencing the landscape as varied and climate-related as possible for the inhabitants, the façades have been fitted throughout with the Schüco ASS 43.NI sliding systems, Schüco ASS 50.NI lift-and-slide systems and Schüco ASS 70 FD folding sliding systems.

Die mit Travertinplatten verkleidete, dezent perforierte Haupteingangsfassade befindet sich auf der Straßenseite. Unterhalb der Eingangsebene sind sekundäre Nutzungsbereiche, u. a. eine Tiefgarage, untergebracht.

Clad with travertine stones, the subtly perforated façade of the main entrance faces the street. Secondary areas, such as an underground garage, are accommodated below the entry level.Khoo Guojie, Singapur

To the visitor entering via its street-facing side, “House X”, the private home of a Chinese family living in Singapore, appears to be mysteriously locked away. The façade at the main entrance is clad with bright travertine stones, subtly perforated for lighting and ventilation purposes. This suggests seclusion and privacy, as was explicitly required by the clients. The wide, wood-panelled, glassless main entrance further contributes to this discreet, closed impression of the building. As you walk in, the first space experienced is a square courtyard verdant with ferns and trees, which serves to channel light through and ventilate the core of the building. The seclusion only unravels as you walk around the courtyard into a spectacular landscape panorama, which stretches over the roofs of adjacent buildings and woods to the opposite side of a wide valley. Figuratively speaking, the design’s juxtaposition of dark and light subscribes to the yin-yang principle of Chinese philosophy.

Rooms with a view

Both the floor plan and configuration of the building structures mirror the diamond shape of the hillside plot. The main part of the building, which houses numerous guest bedrooms, defines the line from which all of the other seemingly informally arranged forms and functional areas unfold. The panorama, compared by the architects to old Chinese landscape paintings, is treated democratically. Each individual room and each zone on the first two floors look out onto the spectacular view. The living spaces and sleeping quarters for the clients are clearly highlighted in terms of size, material and construction as two russet “boxes”, clad on the inside with antique teak panels and fitted outside with rust-coloured Corten steel planking. The communal, dining and fitness areas in the basement of the building, as well as roofed terraces, face the outdoor facilities, most notably a large, diamond-shaped pool.

Three different Schüco sliding systems

All of the living and dining areas, as well as every one of the many guest bedrooms, look onto the outdoor facilities and the adjoining natural environment. As instructed by the clients, the architects wanted to maximise this transparent design approach for the panorama side of the project and allow it to be adjusted to the climate and position of the sun. This is why they chose sliding systems from Schüco. Narrow profile widths even with room-height, unbroken units as well as easy-to-use and robust fittings technology are what prompted the decision, according to Red Bean Architects. It was predominantly the Schüco ASS 43.NI sliding systems and the Schüco ASS 50.NI lift-and-slide systems that were used. Where a generous room opening without fixed units was desired, the Schüco ASS 70 FD folding sliding systems were installed.

Die gesamte nach Westen ausgerichtete Seite des Objektes öffnet sich dem Natur-Panorama über großflächige Schiebesysteme von Schüco (Schüco ASS 50.NI).

Large-scale Schüco sliding systems (Schüco ASS 50.NI) open up the entire west-facing side of the project to the natural panorama.Khoo Guojie, Singapur

Einer der zahlreichen Schlaf-/Gästeräume, die in Farbe, Materialität und Ausstattung betont schlicht gehalten sind (Schüco ASS 50.NI).

One of the many bedrooms / guest rooms, which have deliberately been kept simple in terms of colour, materials and fittings (Schüco ASS 50.NI).Khoo Guojie, Singapur

Protection against Singapore’s afternoon sun

The afternoon sun in Singapore is particularly strong and notoriously unforgiving. This had to be considered in the structural design of all of the façades facing west and south-west. Hence all the Schüco sliding systems have been fitted with sun shading insulating glazing, which markedly reduces heat gain. Cantilevered, vertical sun shading blades made from aluminium and internal sun shading louvre blades also protect the adjoining rooms from overheating without foregoing the desired transparency.

Schüco partner oversees consultation and implementation

Local Schüco partner Mun Soon Industries played an important role in selecting and constructing the glazed Schüco systems. The detailed consultation conducted by Mun Soon with the architects and clients led to a system being selected and glass being specified that could be ideally adapted to the specific location as well as requirements in terms of convenience and security. The variety of design options available within the Schüco range of systems meant that no special solutions were needed. At 10,480 mm wide and 2,789 mm high, even the largest Schüco ASS 50.NI lift-and-slide system on the project proved very straightforward to install within the technical specifications set out for the system.

Find out more about our partner Schüco.

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