RR Residence blends with the surrounding nature
4.5.2018 BY SANNA HUOVINEN
The mysterious forest town of Kersko is located close to Prague in the Czech Republic. It provides a relaxing living environment for about 200 residents. One of the newest homes in the area is a modern log house, RR Residence, designed by local architect company Monom. The house was chosen as Log Home of the Year 2018 by the Czech Wood for Life Foundation.
Photos: Tuomas Harjumaaskola, Monom
The design process of a unique private home starts with the vision of the future residents of the house. A Czech couple had a dream of a relaxing, ecological and healthy life in the countryside – while enjoying a modern style and facilities. The ideal location was found in the Kersko forests, and the couple decided that a modern log house would be the perfect type of home for them.
When searching for a reliable and capable supplier of a unique log house, the builder couple found some interesting examples of Honka’s house kits. The architect company Monom is a partner of Honka’s Czech representative Finny, and gradually all the pieces started to fall into place.
The cooperation resulted in a completely original, award-winning house design. The professional jury who granted RR Residence the prize of Log House of the Year 2018 praised the design and its implementation with the following comments:
- Very modern and stylish design which is perfectly aligned with the local nature
- Harmonious combination of the residents’ needs and the local, comfortable one-storied building tradition
- Imaginative connectivity with all the smaller buildings located on the residents’ plot
According to Monom architects, the core idea was a house in the middle of the woods. They wanted to maintain the stillness and quietness of the forest, providing a sense of privacy and security for the residents. The T-shaped house is located by a newly built pond, savoring the natural light and air under the tree crowns.
Modern log technology stems from a traditional way of building but it allows the creation of modern forms – extremely precise and minimalistic details, fairly big spans and large openings. Also, the building process is quick.
When their home was designed, the builder couple paid a visit to the Honka log house factory in the middle of Finland. During this visit, they saw how the parts of their own future home were manufactured in an ecological and controlled way. The house is built using the non-settling Honka Fusion log FXL 204, which enables the desired modern design and healthy living circumstances.
The actual building process was managed by an experienced engineer team including certified experts from the Technical University in Prague. The building process of the log house took about 8 months from start to finish.
The T-shaped log home by a pond has three wings
The RR Residence is located in the centre of the forest plot, half-embracing the water. This way, the natural pond has become part of the house. Other characteristics of the plot include the original, tall pine trees. The T-shaped house has one floor with a living space of 315 m2. The three wings have various functions and qualities. The main entrance is at the intersection of the three wings.
The first wing consists of service spaces and rooms, garages and storage. The second wing consists of bedrooms, dressing rooms, a bathroom and a laundry room. The third wing comprises the kitchen, dining room, living room and study.
While traditional log houses require specific context and surroundings to make sense, objects made out of modern logs – if designed well – have the potential to create contemporary spaces (even outside deep forests) while still providing the same advantages as a traditional log house.
It is always a soothing feeling to come to a house made of logs. It is cosy and warm and the smell is comforting. Moreover, wood as a building material helps to decrease the carbon footprint of the house. Log houses will always have their place in the world.
The house celebrates natural, ecological and healthy materials. The walls, roof and terraces are made of wood, mostly Finnish pine supplied from PEFC-certified forests. The floors are made of oak boards and stone tiles. All the doors are made of oak, the windows are wooden-aluminium and the roof is made of titanium-zinc sheets.
Unique features outside and inside the building
The façade facing the street is 47 metres long. However, due to its low height, horizontality and natural colour, it is very well concealed in the forest. The horizontal form creates a nice contrast with the height of the pine trees: the house blends nicely into the woods and elegantly underlines the tall tree verticals.
The perpendicular wing behind the house stretches deep into the centre of the site by the water and is more dynamic. Its roof slope is steeper and its ridge forms a 45-degree angle with the walls, which gives the roof a unique shape. The house exterior is completed with planters and terraces, located mostly near the pond. There are also two big planters at the entrance of the house.
Living in our beautiful Honka log home makes us very happy. The whole journey from design choices, the visit to the log house factory and seeing how our home was built has fulfilled our dreams. It was a pleasure to cooperate with Honka, Honka’s local representative Finny and Monom’s architects.
The volumetric qualities of the house are the defining elements of its interior. The long front wing has a flat roof based on a simple rectangular layout, and consequently the interior space below is modest, rational and human-scaled. In contrast, the main living area is located under a more dramatic, sloping roof, forming a space with a greater clear height and more light and air.
This part of the house has generously sized windows, most of them facing the pond. The openings in the walls are positioned so that they frame the most picturesque views of the forest, such as the clearing around the water, a path towards the pavilion and the silent shadow at the foot of a tall pine.
Take a look at the Case RR Residence
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