The exterior of this chic Upper Claremont house, designed by South African architect Philip Briel, incorporates unique and fascinating design elements reminiscent of the architectural style of the infamous Le Corbusier.
Set in a lush garden landscape of tree ferns, the closed design is modelled in natural wood, offering different perspectives from inside and out, with special design considerations implemented to maximise both day and night lighting. The wooden slats also work to ensure maximum privacy shielding the house from the Cape elements.
A warm front
Big sun-loving picture windows and clear storey windows give a contemporary, modern feel. Rectangular shapes feature strongly for a sense of arranged calm without chaos. This balanced sense of order continues from the patio onto the lawn and outwards towards the swimming pool and sunken trampoline as special garden destinations. Again, perspectives are all important – on closer inspection from a frontal elevation, an interesting architectural feature is easy to spot – all the upstairs rooms are set at an angle which is mimicked by the trampoline and swimming pool. The garden landscape has been designed with symmetrically placed shrubs and trees that attract attention and accentuate the verticals, contrasting with the horizontal angles of the property.
Aluminium stacking doors fold neatly to one side opening from the inside out onto the patio. This creates a fluid space between the outdoors and the living areas, providing a functional degree of separation. The kitchen exists as a pit-stop in-between living spaces doubling as a casual hangout for family and friends, converting easily to a more formal setting for other occasions. Cabinetry is discreet and modern and you’ll notice a refreshing lack of wall tiles that allows the space to exist as something other than just a kitchen.
A timber dining room table becomes a dramatic centrepiece running lengthways to compliment the scale of the dining area leading to a picture window with a view. Other items that add to this gorgeous space are the interior components of dark windows and doors with light walls. The winning combination of black and white works the tuxedo effect in the dining room. Here it forms a beautiful contrast against the wooden furniture. An opulent effect is created using the cables from pendant lighting to create motion and drama. Combined with a choice of detailed wallpaper in peaceful vertical green hues, the effect, together with luscious dark cabinetry, creates a stunning interior that’s simple and effective.
The different entertainment areas can be closed off or open to foot traffic. But either way, the uniformity of the interior is achieved with light floors and walls that work to unify the many spaces. Wall to ceiling picture windows, down lighting and slick details, such as the lack of fiddly floor skirting, give a clean, modern finish. Seating is a mix of casual and formal pieces in rich greens and browns inspired by outdoor scenery. An upholstered ottoman in black and white geometric stripes adds some fun, visual interest and a light, rattan rug doubles as a warm hearthside comfort in winter and something cool underfoot in summer. A pair of polished Cameroon Bamileke stools provides additional seating for extra visitors.
The flow from one area to another is highly prized as an interior feature in luxury living and any extra space is an opportunity to celebrate visually. The palm wallpaper in the dining area is used as a focal point on a gallery wall. The stairway to the second-storey partners adds to the sophisticated effect using timber horizontals. Textured white stucco walls give a casual farmhouse feel with a gentle curve that’s curiously inviting and kinder to navigate.
Paint tones in natural greens, brown and dusty pinks are in keeping with the colour palette downstairs and the black and white theme features strongly. The upstairs areas incorporate some unusual architectural angles many of which open out onto a warm sun-drenched balcony with hanging gardens.
For more information on this property, you can contact Barbara Manning at Sotheby’s International Realty on 083 407 3656.