The Villa Geldrop, designed by Hofman Dujardin Architects is located in Geldrop, The Netherlands. It is a 2-storey family residence that hides its second storey completely below grade while at the same time flooding the lower level with natural light via a long and wide concrete ramp that not only offers the perfect void for sunlight to enter, but also allows the four bedrooms to have direct access to the outdoors. The bedrooms also connect to an inner room with window glazings on two sides that connects both sides of the ramp.
Since the ramp is not apparent above grade, the lower level is completely hidden from a distance and the home appears to be a single storey with a steep pitched roof and one modern roof dormer. The silhouette of the home is completely fitting with the rural setting it sits on. A simple barn shape with large window glazings for views of the pastures, it is only when one approaches the home that the cleverness of the architecture is revealed.
The lower level is based on a symmetrical design of a central hub that leads the four bedrooms – two on either side. There is also a staircase on either side that leads up to the social zone.
Where the main level of the home crosses the ramp is the loation of the dining room. This zone occupies the full width of the residence and, like the common room below it, has glazings on either side for a continuous view both front and back. The solid wall to the left of the dining area hides a hallway flanking one of the stairwells and behind the stairwell is the kitchen.
The complete length of wall on the back of the home is covered in glazings, offering the kitchen on one end, the dining room in the centre and the social zone on the other end expansive views of the pastures. The kitchen wall that flanks the stairwell is fitted with a modern bank of floor to ceiling cabinets, leaving all the prep zone for the island, allowing the chef to always face the view.
The social zone on the far side of the home – unlike the dining room – has a privacy wall to the front of the home. This creates both an intimate and private setting as well as an indoor / outdoor connection. Keeping with the minimalist aesthetic to the home, the architects created evening light through one large statement globe suspended from the central pitch of the ceiling.
The pendant encases one small bulb within its gauze like cage. How stunning the shadow plays must be at night.
The social zone features both a double volume section – with the pendant- and a single volume section where the upstairs family room is located.
The pitched line of the ceiling continues through the family room upstairs, keeping the geometry of the space flowing in one clean visual line. Adding to the geometry is the asymmetrical placement of the fireplace and the TV. The fireplace is long and low, encompassing 2/3 of the wall while the TV is short and high on the final 1/3. The higher placement of the TV carries more visual weight then the lower fireplace, creating a perfect composition of balance, rhythm and harmony.
Instead of completely encasing the end wall in glazings, the architects instead chose to play up the angles of the home by using one true triangular section of glass within the upper pitch line and then dividing the lower portion of wall into private and exposed sections. Its an awesome geometrical composition.
The lower level of the home features four bedrooms, each with their own indoor and outdoor access, as well as their own sink / shower room, while a powder room off of each stairwell is shared by the adjacent bedrooms.
The main level of the home holds all the social zones including the kitchen dining and living areas while the upstairs has two offices, a powder room and an family room.