Architecture, Space

AB House

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Space Encounters


The Netherlands




Lorenzo Zandri

A creative architectural concept that blends traditional and contemporary design cues.

Located in the village of Broek op Langedijk, the Netherlands, this family home dates back to the 1980s. While before the 1970s, the surrounding villages were accessible only by boat, a land consolidation project allowed the development of a residential area, created alongside a nature reserve. The residential zone consists of individual islands, each with a house on it. The dwellings showcase the creativity of Dutch design, as every one has a different, size, shape, fenestration, and materials. In this context, Amsterdam-based architecture firm Space Encounters redesigned an existing building for a growing family.

The studio renovated the 1980s house and transformed it to create contemporary living spaces. At the same time, the design preserves traditional elements. The team preserved the layout of the ground floor, but expanded the house upward with a new level and a new roof. Following local building regulations, the roof rises to the maximum permitted height. To add the first floor extension and larger roof, the architects designed an eye-catching black steel structure. While the ground floor boasts a white painted brickwork exterior, the upper level features a light steel mesh wrap. The corrugated aluminum roof has a matching light hue.

On the ground floor, deep sight lines and large openings link the living spaces to the garden and the water. This level contains the kitchen, dining area and living room, as well as a home office space. Contrasting the open ground floor, the upper floor has a closed facade to provide privacy to the bedrooms and bathroom. Creative details give the house its charm and distinctive character. For example, the black steel frame and the aluminum roof boast geometric openings in the form of a circle, a square, and a triangle. Additionally, the large steel beam gutter has an unconventional, pronounced shape. Thanks to the use of a restrained material and color palette, the different elements – traditional and contemporary – come together in a unitary design. Photography © Lorenzo Zandri.

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