A good property with a view can instantly become a great property, but it is not often that surroundings are integrated into a property’s very design.
Here we see the ‘Oxfordshire Residence’, a stunning modern style home designed by American architect and 20th century modernist Richard Meier. A project spanning ten years, the main residence and guest house were designed for an anonymous client of Meier's, and have just been shortlisted for a RIBA regional award.
The white rendered exterior of the property stands out strikingly against a luscious green landscape, but the 'residence' is far more in tune with its surroundings than you might think.
"The site is open landscape and the way the house is organised and situated would be like many English manor houses," Meier told Dezeen. "So the siting and the context is related to the English manor houses of the past."
Indeed, the property seems perfectly aware of and at home with its surroundings. The rear of the main house, which backs onto a wood, is almost completely solid, while the generously sized windows that emerge towards the front let residents embrace the incredible open landscape below.
By far the most fascinating part of this property is how the interior layout has been carefully designed to provide compelling views from different angles. No windows are wasted, each offering a beautiful natural portrait. It makes examining the main house an absolute treat and gives you an appreciation not just for the incredible countryside but also for the keen awareness of the architect: clearly this is someone who knows the value of a good view!
The interior of the residence welcomes the natural light with opaque white walls and furniture. While some may find this overpowering, it certainly emphasises the rich natural colours of the house's surroundings.
The hickory wooden floors add a welcome sense of warmth and colour that certain parts of the interior seem to lack, although it is clear that the client who commissioned the house has a real appreciation for modernist design.
Five bedrooms with ensuite bathrooms sit on the top floor of the residence, with the main living areas all on the ground floor. The basement houses utility space, as well as a private gym. From the top floor, a footbridge connects to a higher part of the hillside, where residents can enjoy a private outdoor swimming pool.
The nearby guesthouse is self contained, with its own open plan kitchen and lounge.
"Our primary site goal is always to create a strong sense of place, by enhancing or transforming the existing site in a unique and provocative way," Meier continued.
"Whether urban, or the open landscape, we search the context of each project individually for clues that inspire an idea about issues of organisation, scale, and location that provoke a strong dialog with its setting."
All images copyright © Hufton + Crow.
Stephen heads the team for marketing, media and research at Plentific. He loves sharing insight and advice for the home services market. He has a keen interest in property renovations after successfully completing a number of property projects.