location: Fresnaye, Cape Town | architecture: KMMA architects – Ben Kotlowitz | interior design / décor: Understanding Design Interiors | photography: Peter Bruyns

This Fresnaye property of 600 square metres held a close connection to architect Ben Kotlowitz who had previously completed a major renovation on the existing double-storey house some 12 years previously. He was recently tasked by the new owners to deliver a contemporary, modernist design that would facilitate family, entertainment and offer a lifestyle that incorporated interior / exterior flow. A prerequisite was to maximise the views out to the ocean and to Lion’s Head at the rear.

The reconstruction necessitated excavating below the existing house to create additional garaging where a lift was installed to provide easy access to the main living and entertaining level. This comprises a spacious lounge / dining area, which opens onto an extensive covered terrace.

Externally, the house features a white marble clad base with dark grey and charcoal tones highlighting the purist forms of the architectural composition above. Large planes of glass are balanced by elements of concrete and steel to provide an aesthetically proportioned form of varying layers.

Care was taken to create a detailed and textured space, using elements such as large format Italian porcelain tiles and natural oak strips. These were installed imaginatively on areas such as the entrance ceiling and stairwell enclosure and serve a dual purpose in creating both a screen and security benefit when required.

The central stairwell features a floating steel and timber staircase as the main vertical connecting element and is embraced by limed timber slats that are consistent throughout the house. This space is further highlighted by an imported wall finish that emulates molten metal and provides drama and texture to the area.

The middle level also contains two guest bedrooms en suite: one facing the ocean with private balcony and the second accessing the mountainside garden space and the exterior.

For the full article see Habitat #267 September / October 2018


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