Tree silhouettes reflected against the large windows. Luscious woods in the background. Crystal clear water underneath. Lake House manages to simultaneously blend in with its surroundings and stand out.
This luxury holiday villa for small families is a speculation by Wafai Architecture that was initially for a client who had to withdraw from it. Nevertheless, the designer had already fallen in love with it by then and went on to create this breathtaking project.
I decided to visit the area alone after studying it on the internet," they explain, "and I was fascinated by its nature: it's far better than any image found online.
With such a striking setting, they obviously had to find a way of emphasizing and incorporating it within the actual architecture. At the same time, they balanced it by creating a conscious contrast that allows this dynamic building to pop against it.
Let us take you on a virtual tour to show you how.
One with nature (almost)
The bold shape of the light-colored, plaster-covered concrete exteriors immediately stands out against the green forest behind it. However, the spacious glass facade also reflects the trees on the other side of the lake, making nature an integral part of this luxury villa.
As the dynamic lines of its walls merge into the roof, they drive the eye towards the actual forest smoothly. This villa's connection to its surroundings becomes even stronger during winter, when the pale concrete walls blend together with the snowy background.
An impeccable reflection
Another way in which our designer has chosen to embrace this Swiss natural landscape is by positioning the Lake House in a way that maximizes its reflection. The peculiar beauty of its entire external architecture is emphasized and literally doubled by its upside-down version, especially during the clearest days.
Because it protrudes into the lake, this layout also transforms the front pool into its natural extension. The Lake House appears to be floating on its surface, as if it had naturally emerged from its depth and is now just as integral to the landscape as the rest of the valley.
A minimalist, brutalist approach
The choice of materials (concrete in particular) translates into the charming unfinished feel that characterizes brutalist design. The lack of additional architectural elements on the longest sides of the Lake House also maintains the focus on its unpredictable shapes and the actual lines.
The view of a lifetime
If this gorgeous building appears to lack windows when admired from one side, it certainly makes up for it through its front and roof.
The abundance of glass welcomes plenty of natural light into the Lake House and guarantees an epic view of this body of water, the lush forests around it, and the sky.
A gentler twist on brutalist interiors
Even when you step through the front door, you'll find that the Lake House maintains the same brutalist inspiration: its interiors focus on larger architectural elements and a raw feel rather than a variety of decorative and ornamental features.
At the same time, it softens it through its smoother lines, from the harmonious ceilings to the staircase that descends from the top floor like a waterfall.
A charming element of coziness
Its brutalist structure and lack of excessive decorative items are compensated by the strategic use of wood, both when it comes to furniture pieces and larger elements (like the sloping ceiling or the floor showcasing a clever alternation of chevrons and diagonal lines).
As well as inspiring a familiar sense of coziness, this material further reinforces the connection between the house and the woods surrounding it. While the Lake House was the natural product of its setting, it is now impossible to picture lake Türlersee without this majestic villa in between its forests and waters.