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Dune House by Jarmund / Vigsnæs Arkitekter and Mole Architects

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[MANSER MEDAL 2012] Guest house surrounded by sand dunes with an undulating roof

More from: Manser Medal 2012

This is a conceptually bold project that is also well detailed and constructed. An open-plan living space hunkered into its land is topped by four tent-like bedrooms above. Architecturally, the roof form plays on the local vernacular gables and sheds, but is also an exploration in geometry.

A beach holiday is about being with friends and family and connected to nature. The living room is a big, open-plan space with sliding doors in three corners onto sunken external areas set into the grassy dunes, protected from the wind. The four bedrooms above, likened by the architect to sleeping in attic rooms on holidays, are playful, evoking exciting spaces under canvas. These rooms maintain their links to the landscape with stunning views framed by both picture and smaller windows.

A concrete core on a raft foundation housing stairs and services enables the open plan, column-free span on the ground level, with the upper concrete floor spanning as far as the delicate external perimeter steel posts. Environmental features include well-insulated roofs, a 7,500-litre grey water tank and a heat recovery system. The client mandated a house that achieves a 20 per cent improvement in energy efficiency over building regulations.

RIBA Award, East

AJ Buildings Library

See images and drawings of Dune House by Jarmund / Vigsnæs Arkitekter and Mole Architects

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