A house of contrasts: Villa Kogelhof
Concrete and farmland combined in harmony
Its very presence appears to contrast with the barren terrain of the former farmland. But a closer look reveals that the building and the landscape do in fact seem to form a single coherent entity. It is intended to be simple, yet exceptional. Striking, without impacting Mother Nature. Even the very concept of Villa Kogelhof in the town of Kamperland is clearly teeming with contrasts. The house, created by the Dutch firm Paul de Ruiter Architects, consists of two structures perpendicular to each other and connected by a concrete core. When you consider the surrounding landscape – torn apart by canals and connected by dams and bridges – the choice of setting for this unusual configuration makes complete sense.
Integrated into the natural surroundings: The building as a reflection of the landscape
The villa’s 715 square metres of living space is split between a floating cube and an underground lower floor, half of which is built into a slope. Arranged at a 90° angle to one another and with an open-air level in-between, the different sections of the building form two fully functional units.
As well as a garage with space for six cars and a tractor, the underground floor also houses a bathroom, storage space and a generously-sized office with a view overlooking the large man-made pool. A staircase leads occupants to the central living area, which is raised 3.5 metres off the ground.
Minimalist design language leaves room for the vastness of the surroundingsThe design of the aboveground part of the building is more spacious and open. Minimalist furniture and uniformly white walls immediately draw the eye to the view afforded by the extensive glass façades on all four sides, enabling the inside/outside divide to seemingly melt away. The layout of the rooms is just as fluid, as the kitchen, bathroom, bedroom, and common areas are only separated by glass walls. The entrance on the ground floor of the concrete core is also made of glass. Its visual counterpart is the V-shaped inner courtyard, which the living areas open onto.
Impressions of Villa Kogelhof
Energy self-sufficient and intelligent: Gira is making Villa Kogelhof smart
To match the clear design language of the building and the understated interior design, the building owners chose the Gira E2 switch series for the technical equipment. With its extensive range of functions and colour options, the switch range contributes to the villa’s intelligent building technology. Not only do a climate façade and the efficient energy concept ensure a comfortable indoor climate all year round; they also cater for the villa’s own energy supply. The holistic and sustainable concept not only consists of a water supply system, but also air heat exchangers, a wind turbine, and a 280 square metres photovoltaic module on the roof. The 71,000 trees already planted will surround the distinctive luxury villa in the future and provide firewood for the pellet stove in the years to come.
Technology and nature in harmony
Since its completion in 2013, Villa Kogelhof has already received seven international awards. The modern structure is a house of contrasts. The building’s various elements are as divided as they are connected, and as solid as they are transparent. They reflect the characteristic landscape and yet leave room for the vastness of their surroundings to come to life. Paul de Ruiter and his six-person team have clearly succeeded in building a striking object, in which architecture, technology and landscape are not only placed in juxtaposition, but also perfectly combined in harmony.
You too can benefit from the varied functions of Gira’s switch ranges in your home – simply choose your favourite design.