About the project
The client of House Boz, Pretoria requested a spacious and luxurious four-bedroom steel, glass, concrete and stone residence with an emphasis placed on the design of the living rooms. The vastness and natural setting of this site inspired design resembling a bush lodge that responds to nature and its immediate surroundings. Translating this concept into a contemporary home was almost effortless thanks to the location, orientation and natural beauty of the site.
The architectural design by Nico van der Meulen Architects communicates and reinforces the concept, as can be seen in the selection of materials used and the way the internal spaces relate to the outdoors. The choice of materials and finishes was limited to natural materials and earthy colours. Initially, the site revealed itself as a mound of slate that was excavated and hand-cut for the gabion landscape walls and the stone cladding used throughout the house. The striking square and rectangular rusted steel boxes are strategically positioned while the stone-clad walls extend the house into the landscape, creating integration between building and site.
Driving towards the house one is guided by LED strips built into the exposed concrete driveway, up to a point where you are looking through the house at the sky behind it. Approaching the house, under the portico, guests face a large Mentis grating gate leading into a protected atrium. This place includes a water feature and a steel sculpture by Regardt van der Meulen. Several sliding doors open into this, making it possible to sleep with the doors open.
The entrance hall features a concrete and steel staircase, with LED lights built into the treads, and a steel sculpture of the biblical Job also by Regardt van der Meulen. The back wall to the staircase was clad with perforated steel scaffolding planks, back-lit, leading to the family room and the views beyond. Concrete-clad walls with eroded steel sculptures channel the view from the family room over the expansive property.
The kitchen is any cooks dream – with frameless folding doors, leading directly onto the lanai and swimming pool. With views that stretch forever, it is the heart of the house. A steel bridge with steel floor connects the main bedroom with the kid’s 3 bedrooms and pyjama lounge. One of the kids’ suites was designed for twins. All of these suites are facing north, with rusted steel frames creating sun control.
The spacious main suite is located on the north-east corner, getting the morning and winter sun. The balcony here is screened from the west sun by a rusted steel wall and framed by rusted steel beams, while the bathroom is fully glazed to the east and north.
The interior spaces, designed by M Square Lifestyle Design, are strategically linked through the use of various natural materials. The design exposes the truth of the materials by using them in their purest form such as incorporating in situ-concrete, quartzite cladding and rusted mild steel in the design.