At first sight, this family house in Zagreb’s (Croatia) residential outskirts might look like a new one, built from scratch. Which is not entirely the case, as the base is an older house built in the 1950s, which was no longer suitable for modern living standards. 3LHD Architects completely changed the shape and the orientation of the house in order to create nice and private living spaces for the owners, a family with young children. The old house was exposed to the street on one side and to a neighboring house on the other side. The architects created a new L-shaped side, with the facades overlooking the street and the neighbors protected from the views. The inside of the L, overlooking the garden and enclosing it at the same time, was treated differently, with glass facades at the level of the social and circulation spaces, and wooden facades with sliding wooden blinds at the bedrooms level. The long side of the L is on three levels, while the shorter one has a sloping roof that eats up part of a floor, leaving just two floors on this side. The first level of the house is carved into the slope, and it consists of an open space with kitchen, dining room and living room on one side, and an indoors pool on the other. As these spaces are at the garden level and open towards it through big glazed doors, the limits between indoors and outdoors are blurred, creating a continuous space. The main entrance from the street is at the middle level of the house, where there is also a garage, storage space and a studio.
The inside of the L is lined with a wooden deck, which creates a smooth transition between the house and the garden.
The three levels of the house are very clearly marked by the use of different materials: concrete for the base level, glass for the middle one and wood for the top floor. The middle glass level goes down along with the staircase creating only two floors on the shorter side of the L.
The light is filtered through the translucent panels, creating privacy but letting natural light in at the same time.
Where the facades are in clear glass, the light floods unobstructed the interiors.