location: Fresnaye, Cape Town | architecture: Kotlowitz Marais Architects / Understanding Design | interior design: Francois Du Plessis | landscaping: Soul Gardens | photography: Wieland Gleich

This singular project on the Atlantic Seaboard involved the remodelling of an existing house, built about 20 years ago. Situated near the top of a secluded cul-de-sac, high up in Fresnaye, it enjoys spectacular views of the ocean, Lion’s Head and Signal Hill.

The result is a family home with an emphasis on entertaining and casual living. Unrestricted flow from interior to exterior is enabled by expansive covered patios offering 360o vistas. The brief from the owners was to create a contemporary and secure home that would represent the finest aspects of Atlantic Seaboard lifestyle.

Says architect Ben Kotlowitz: ‘The clients’ prerequisite was for a no fuss, easy living home; they offered us a free hand, but wanted the vistas to be most important. And they didn’t want to include any jarring colours that might compete with the natural exterior palette; there was also a timeframe we had to adhere to. Other prerequisites were to cater for frequent entertaining, so we used robust materials that are easily maintained. Lastly they travel regularly so the house had to be easy to lock up and leave.

‘Seen from the exterior, the façade comprises a series of rectangular forms that respond to the views while creating interior interest through apertures that frame them. They help to direct the experience of living in the house as a series of events, rather than merely being within a glass structure that exposes the occupants to the sun, and to neighbouring properties.’

The result is a 450 square metre structure set over three storeys on a 500 square metre plot. The lower floor comprises garaging, a home theatre, plus a covered terrace leading to an outdoor pool deck and spa bath – an area that enjoys spectacular views of Lion’s Head.

The middle floor houses the main living components; a spacious white concrete-topped open plan kitchen with separate scullery leads to an entertainer-friendly dining area. Beyond is the living space, which is able to be contiguous or screened off from a TV / family room by means of a full height sliding / folding
door system.

For the full article see Habitat #263 January / February 2018

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