Kea Island, Cyclades
Approaching the land through the narrow, dusty roads of rural Kea, the first impression one gets is the breathtaking and undisturbed Aegean sea view you are allowed to take in, overlooking the islands of Kithnos, Gyaros and Siros.
Oak trees, myrtles and indigenous short plants are randomly scattered around the dark stone drywalls and rocky landscape of the plot.
The amphitheatrical character of the plot as well as the above, which are common in the Aegean islands and even more in the rural island of Kea, located just an hour away from Athens, were the elements that inspired the main architecture concept of the project.
Designed as a tourism investment, the project borrows the harsh environment elements such as the rocks and stone drywalls as well as traditional Kea Patterns, found all across the island and translates them into a simple yet meaningful architecture envelope that allows light, air and the sea views to play the first role and be magnified through the project.
The house itself, taking advantage of the slope is broken into 3 floors interconnected by a long staircase and hallway, lit by the sun and playing with the shadows created by the patterned fixed shutters. The breaking of the volumes allows the house to be cut into fragments which enhance the privacy that a rental villa requires, but at the same time, interact with the land in many ways.
The volumes are all angled in such a way, strategically positioned to maximize the view intake as well as external spaces due the plots topography.
In the middle volume, where the day spaces are located, a traditional inclined stone drywall allows an overhanging pergola, which again uses a traditional Kea pattern as a shading system, to take in the views and a sunken fire pit and an exterior living room as well as a horizon pool to act as a continuity of the breathtaking view found at the plot.
Internally, the interior design and architecture of all house spaces are left as natural as possible, with the traditional wooden furniture and patterns carefully placed, forged concrete internally and externally and build in furniture as well as large veranda sliding doors enhancing the casual and summer house atmosphere that the project has, blending the boundaries between interior and exterior spaces, therefore allowing its end user to relax, take in the views and focus on what is really important – not the house but the human.
The design leaves most of the land as wild and undisturbed as possible with the only exception being an inclined stone wall which runs all along the length of the house externally and acts not only as an exterior circulation path but also as a privacy blocker for the neighboring property.
Finally, the facade coating is a traditional bright brushed white render, allowing the project to blend with the rest of the houses of Kea, respecting the traditional character of the island and creating a distinct contrast from the dark and rocky landscape.