Residence in the forest defined by two stacked concrete volumes

The villa designed by Govaert & Vanhoutte architects, located near a forest in Belgium, develops along the slope of the hill combining architecture and nature. 

Residence FSD is embedded along the slope of a hill just outside Brussels, on the edge of a forest. Designed by Bruges-based Govaert & Vanhoutte architects, the house is made up of two overlapping concrete blocks that seem to blend into the sloping terrain and the surrounding nature.

Residence FSD
Govaert & Vanhoutte architects, Residence FSD. Section.

Orientation played a fundamental role in the definition of the façades: north-east side, which looks onto the street, appears as a single, completely enclosed concrete block, featuring the main entrance and a small car park. To the south-east, on the other hand, the residence shows both blocks and opens up onto the landscape through glass façades that let in light.

Residence FSD
Govaert & Vanhoutte architects, Residence FSD. Photo Tim Van De Velde

Extending towards the forest, the lower floor seems to escape the rest of the structure with a volume that includes a swimming pool – reduced in depth to save an old tree. The upper level houses an open space with kitchen and living room, as well as master bedroom, bathroom and walk-in wardrobe on the east side, all overlooking the forest. A terrace runs the entire length of the block, while a concrete canopy protects the rooms from the sun thus creating a suspended patio.

Residence FSD
Govaert & Vanhoutte architects, Residence FSD. Photo Tim Van De Velde

Connected by a central staircase, the lower floor is designed to house the sleeping area, consisting of three bedrooms and two bathrooms, a multi-functional area, a warehouse and a garage. Together with concrete, the studio used wooden strips to cover floors and external walls.

Residence FSD
Private residence
Govaert & Vanhoutte architects

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