“This house had been in my mind for many years; waiting for the right location and the right architects to interpret my ideas and design my dream house while sticking to my tight budget. The final product gives me all that I wanted; light, space, connection with the garden, all wrapped up in a stunning contemporary design.” Maureen
The site for this project is located on a quiet sloping cul de sac in Dalkey. The existing house on the site is one of 7 bungalows originally built on the road in the 1940‘s.
The client’s brief was to provide a modern 3 bedroom, low energy and low maintenance house.
While the client’s intention was to refurbish and extend the original dilapidated property, an initial study concluded that the most efficient approach was to demolish it and construct a new house in its place.
The site, which slopes in 2 directions, was a challenge initially but ultimately presented an opportunity. By replacing the existing bungalow with a new part single-storey, part two-storey house, considerably more internal floor area was provided while limiting the increase in the footprint of the new house. The result is a compact house that makes the most of the sloping site while at the same time minimising its impact from the road and neighbouring properties
The new house includes a diagonal spine wall and its unusual geometry is determined by relating to the houses on both sides - on one side, an original 1940’s bungalow set at 30 degrees to the road and on the other, a more recent newly built house set parallel to the road.
3 bedrooms, the main bathroom and a utility room are located at the main entrance level upstairs. The master bedroom suite is kept to one side and contains an ensuite accessed via the walk-in wardrobe. A central stairs, with a solid metal balustrade and lit from above, follows the main spine wall down to the garden level. Here, the spine wall and stairs separate a large kitchen/dining room from the living room. Large floor to ceiling sliding doors and windows lead from both spaces to the outside patio area.
Custom made fitted furniture has been designed for the house and ample storage is concealed at garden level making the most of the blank retaining wall at this lower level.
The house incorporates the latest sustainable and energy efficient measures while not compromising its modern aesthetic, reflected in the externally insulated smooth grey rendered walls, thermally broken aluminum windows and a well insulated shallow pitched roof profile.
Design & Construction: Diarmaid Brophy Architects
Design & Tender: SOSA (Diarmaid was project architect at SOSA)
Photography: Richard Hatch, © 2016
Awards: Commended, 2017 RIAI Irish Architecture Awards