The N residence is situated in a spectacular location, surrounded by mountains and the scenery of the sea of Sagami rchitect Mario Shimodaira utilized the 700㎡ sloping land and its surrounding environment and planned a basement + 2-story building based on the owner’s lifestyle. The entrance and a Jacuzzi with a view of the ocean were placed on the 1st floor. The dining room and kitchen were placed next to the living room, positioned where the best view can be enjoyed, and the guest rooms and bedrooms were positioned to the back of the home on the 2nd floor. On both floors, large terraces were placed facing the ocean. The terrace on the 1st floor is a space to enjoy outdoor activities, with an outdoor kitchen and direct access to the Jacuzzi. In contrast, the terrace on the 2nd floor next to the living room is a place to rest quietly on the daybeds, and is functionally separated from the 1st floor outdoor living terrace. To maximize the opening to the ocean, the 1st floor structure is concrete and the 2nd floor structure is steel. The exposed steel columns produce a dramatic structural beauty with the combination of wood. The details were designed carefully, and with the usage of mosaic tiles and bricks, the architect successfully created a house of timeless comfort.
The owner who lives in central Tokyo, dreamed of having a weekend house for enjoying climbing and tennis. He finally found a 1000m2 plot of land in Karuizawa, Nagano, where he often visited seasonally. Architects Norio Yokota and Noriko Kawamura were appointed to design a house that appreciates the surrounding nature. The two designed a W13.5m×D6.3m×H5m oblong wooden-structured building on the gentle south slope. The north and west sides face the road and are surrounded by larches with a few branches on the bottom. Thus, the foyer, artier, main bedroom and bathroom were positioned on the 1st floor, considering the view from the surroundings; the 2nd floor contains the kitchen & dining rooms, living room, and guest room. Respecting the owner’s request to enjoy the natural feeling of light and wind, the black wooden lateral grid windows were used as a fa?ade. These lateral grid windows creating gradation, frame the scenery and create an impressive fa?ade. The rooms are positioned in a “U”shape, surrounding the light court situated in the center of the building. The 3 glass walls facing the light court make it possible to enjoy the scenery everywhere and allows the lights to shine all the way through the house. Because Karuizawa becomes very cold in the winter, heat storage systems using night electricity (which is more inexpensive than day electricity) were placed on both floors, to keep the temperature comfortable throughout the season. The heat that is released throughout the day is gathered below the floor, and the whole house is warmed evenly from the floor. The sense of seasonal changes can be fully enjoyed, and time passes comfortably in this house.