Minimalissimo


Categorized “Architecture”

Ali Chocolate Boutique by a01 Architektai, located in the Lithuanian capital, Vilnius, is painted with a restrictive palette of stark white. Beyond the minimalistic palette, the interior features titled columns, furniture surfaces and metal details, guiding customers to view the delicious delicacies showcased by a beautiful golden light fixture. A service island is located in the middle of the space, accessible and visible from all sides, which customers and employees orbit around. Two types of zones for indulging in chocolate and drinks are arranged either side of the space. The bar-height tables are designed for enjoying a quick espresso and piece of cake, whereas the lounge tables were designed for a more comfortable tasting of delicacies. The architects explain: The large and active light fixture, decorated with a golden mirror, was designed to provide a contrast to the passive environment, giving the interior the impression of liveliness, absorbing the colours, smells and tastes that surround it, as well as emitting a warm mood. A real treat, in more ways than one. Photography by Darius Petrulaitis.


Situated in the district of Mompiano in the north part of the Italian city of Brescia, this beautiful swimming centre is characterised as urban architecture, open to a specific relationship with the surroundings. The aim of the architects — Camillo Botticini, Francesco Craca, Arianna Foresti, Studio Montanari and Nicola Martinoli — was to design something different from the classic sports building seen as a ubiquitous object. The architectural theme is expressed by treating the compact block of the brown Clinker through a sequence of excavated fronts, that change its character in relation to the interior spaces and the different conditions of external reference. The distribution organises three functional parts: a large main room with a pool for water polo, a nucleus of changing rooms on three levels and a room with two small pools for courses. The main room has a large window facing the north outside lawn and to the east side it opens towards a patio with beautiful bamboo’s plants. I love when good design is applied to the spaces for public use. The people of Brescia can swim in a beautifully minimalist environment. Photography by Niccolò Galeazzi.


Overlooking the seaside in Greece is the elegant Villa Melana. Created by local designers Panagiotis Papassotiriou and Valia Foufa, the focal point of the home is the spectacular view of the sea and sky. Each of the main living areas was designed to take in the stunning Greek environment, and the materials used were carefully selected to incorporate the home into the natural landscape. On the exterior, rough stone walls tie the home in with the rocky surrounding landscape. Bright white walls contrast with the stone façade. The white walls also reflect the sun, which helps the house stay cool in the dry heat. Climate-appropriate landscaping, wood terraces, and stone paths create an inviting outdoor atmosphere. The stone continues on the interior, providing a welcome connection to the landscape outside. Walls of glass provide a view to the pool while sleek doors open to a covered terrace. Adjacent to the terrace, the infinity pool pairs perfectly with the soft Mediterranean water. Just imagine the lazy days and perfect nights at this seaside getaway. What could be more perfect?


Unambiguous visual contrast with the surrounding landscape and a great concern for self-sufficiency are the main draws for Villa Kogelhof; the prize-winning piece from Paul de Ruiter Architects, a Netherlands based firm. A true case study on how to reconcile appropriate indulgence and sustainability, while achieving such feat relying solely on two minimalist volumes. In the age where privacy is an ever-changing concept, it’s a luxury to build a residence with no worries for discretion. The glass box is supported by a courageous steel V-frame, housing the living rooms, kitchen, bathrooms and bedrooms; it takes sophisticated planning to make it all work on a mono-volume such as this. The whole façade is made of glass, making a permanent panoramic view for its occupants, imprinting a contemporary aesthetic often found in corporate buildings. This modern-looking residence stands bravely in the middle of a 25-hectare state, a visual intervention on the bucolic countryside. The brave adjective wasn’t applied lightly in this case, since this residence is energy neutral. Applying numerous technological solutions, the glass box manages to harvest energy throughout the year. It achieves complete autarky with a stylish exterior and a timeless interior design thanks to classic furniture from Eileen Grey...


Located in a relaxed area in rural Shiga, Japan, the Japanese studio FORM/Kouichi Kimura architects has developed this beautifully structured family residence; Courtyard House. We invited the architects to tell us a little more about the project: Designed to form a U-shaped building with a courtyard, which secures privacy, the house was requested to incorporate with the scenery while making the best use of the spacious site of about 330 square metres. The interior is configured by a single open room whereby finishes and levels vary to make each space independent and comfortable, creating various scenes as one moves from one place to another. The construction has many remarkable aspects to it, such as its pale grey corrugated metal façade giving the house an industrial aesthetic. As well as the linear water channel through the courtyard directing the eye towards the landscape, and the concrete elements throughout the interior, which all add value to this magnificent, minimalist home.


Rob Kennon Architects designed this lovely family home located in a suburb of Melbourne, Australia. Burnley House is a perfect example of beautiful and liveable modern design. The home is divided into private and public areas, distinguished by a clever use of materials. The public areas of are filled with airy materials and a plethora of natural light, while the private rooms are smaller, darker, and cozy. The large and open great room features tall ceilings and a stretch of white cabinetry. Long, sleek windows occupy a position on every wall and wood floors bring a pleasant texture into the room. In the bedrooms, the walls are clad in a deep brown wood and the floors are covered with soft rugs. The mix of materials in Burnley House is flawless. Concrete, wood, black-framed windows, and smooth white surfaces are incorporated throughout the home, creating visual interest and continuity of design. I love how the furnishings completely compliment the surfaces and textures of the structure. Every piece of Burnley House is seamlessly pulled together, creating a structure any family would be lucky to call home.


Unusual geometry and minimalism makes for an incredible pair, especially when applied to renovation projects and updating old structures to contemporary standards. Taking over an existing post-and-beam building, maintaining all the best elements to its advantage and adapting the inner workings to the owners’ lifestyle are Patrick Tighe Architecture’s triumphs for this Malibu based residence. The ceiling makes its presence quite obvious throughout the house, as it shapes itself as a main feature; for this reason, the visual dynamic is built around the roof’s geometry. The windows and furniture work their way around it, with unconcealed adaptations in the bedrooms, living rooms and even bathrooms. This residence remixes a timeworn architectonic element that is often hidden or modified to achieve uniformity, and breathes new life with eclectic variations. The owner’s art and design collection is tastefully incorporated into the daily life; as display niches, special lighting and white canvas spaces make room for each piece to shine. The end result is a very dynamic and vibrant residence, with sharp angles and various textures in all rooms. The grand entry door says it all, its uneven shape introduces the concept in a glance. Minimalism can flirt with eccentricity from time to...


La Piscina del Roccolo is a luxurious indoor swimming pool designed by Italian architecture firm act_romegialli. The concept for the project was to create a pool and bathing house that would capitalize on the view of the countryside. The result is a humble structure nestled in the hilly site. On the western end of the building is a long stretch of windows placed adjacent to the pool. The windows visually connect the pool to its landscape all year round. In the warmer months this wall slides open, creating an indoor/outdoor bathing experience. Much of the structure is housed underground so as to impede the landscape as little as possible. The locker rooms and fitness center are placed in this underground area, allowing the pool an interrupted view to the outside. White mosaic tiles mingle with oak accents and exposed concrete on the interior. This marriage of materials brings depth and dimension to an otherwise simple space. On the exterior, stone walls and plenty of plant life ensure the structure stays integrated with its environment. La Piscina del Roccolo is an ideal space for exercise, relaxation, and connecting with nature.


London-based Fourfoursixsix’s Villa Mörtnäs combines considered Scandinavian style together with abounding contextual deliberation. Designed over three levels, the minimal formality of this villa clearly helps define a lineation of spaces within. Each floor plays its own, almost completely differing, function from the next. Entering at ground level is support space, which is submerged into the landscape and acts as the private entrance to the house. Ascending upward, the first level then houses the areas for rest and sleep, with the remaining living spaces on the upper most level, all accessed through stairs. The intentional vistas throughout, the regular and purposed window locations, create selected key apertures revealing the view. The living areas have been placed at the top of the building in order to enhance sunlight. There is also a notable differentiated volume in height between the floors. The living spaces almost seem to be double in volume, compared to the other levels. The intention is to amplify the light accessibility into the spaces. Completed in 2014, the arrangement on site of the villa to be facing the sea helps create a connection to the landscape beyond. The materiality of concrete, glass, oak and a muted palette, creates a sense...


Micro-Apartment Moabit is the result of a creative renovation by Berlin-based design studio spamroom. This tiny Berlin apartment was in need of a unique renovation not only because of its small size, but because of its early 1900’s construction. Like many buildings built at the turn of the century, this apartment featured several small and crowded rooms and was heavy with layers of renovations from previous owners. The design plan was to open up the space by removing all of the interior walls and rebuild an interior system that maximized the potential of every square meter. A central core was created to hold the kitchen and bathroom, and a mezzanine, accessed by a small white staircase, was added for the sleeping space. This simple design takes advantage of typically wasted space, such as tall ceilings and stair landings, to create a supremely functional living area. Many of the home’s original materials were salvaged during construction and incorporated in the renovated home. As a result, this light and airy design has a touch of Art Nouveau charm. This micro-apartment is just 21 square meters; not a space that most people would jump at living in. But with the right design team, even the tiniest of homes can be...


Nowadays working with a site area as large as 1,000 sqm for residential projects is a luxury; Israel-based Pitsou Kedem Architects did not take this privilege for granted. Opting for a white canvas as basis for every ambient isn’t the only alluring feature of this project, but also the main room as an extravagant living area hosting all social activities; all the while effortlessly upholding a minimalist awareness and aesthetic for a 450 sqm home. Housing a living room, dining area, kitchen, library and a seamless entrance to a beautiful terrace with a pool is the tour-de-force the architects have to offer as the heart of the residence. The ample 6m high ceilings offers lightness and amplitude to counter balance what could have been a crowded room. Some design details manage to sneak in, adding great personality, such as the floating stairs, subdued but stylish white furniture, geometric and clean closets in all rooms and a blatant hanging light above the dinner table. Equilibrium is the key word for the Ramat Hasharon House, as it manages to balance a wide spectrum of functionalities with concise minimalist architecture immaculately. Photography by Amit Geron.


Minimalism, one can argue, heightens one’s experience of the details and the surroundings. Not only that, it also creates the notion of multi-functionality of an object or a space. A perfect example is a minimal home in Montréal, Canada called In Suspension by Naturehumaine. The house, with a rather open floor plan, provides a double-height space in the social area for a physical exercise room with a few corresponding fixtures. That atrium then is utilized as a light bringer for its two sides, occupied with a kitchen and a study room that looks out to the main road. Up above on the second floor are two plywood-cladded boxes, each having a bedroom and a bathroom within. These boxes cantilevered over the social space below, being held up by a continuous black wall, which holds various programs on the inside. Calling the project In Suspension is similar to creating a minimal house, with the idea of having more than one use. Structurally, the private spaces are suspended above. Functionally, the social space has suspended furniture for gymnastic purposes. Together, the entirety merge together effortlessly to create a minimalism that is both exciting and undeniably beautiful.