Unsupported browser

For a better experience please update your browser to its latest version.

Your browser appears to have cookies disabled. For the best experience of this website, please enable cookies in your browser

We'll assume we have your consent to use cookies, for example so you won't need to log in each time you visit our site.
Learn more

Hyde + Hyde wins planning for sunken courtyard home

  • Comment

Swansea’s Hyde + Hyde Architects has won the go-ahead for this 140m2 ‘inward looking’ courtyard home on the Gower Peninsula in Wales


The scheme in Langland Bay sits within a ’sunken basin with limited views and issues of overlooking’ from neighbouring houses.

Due to complete in 2017, the subterranean home features large ‘extruded aluminium light funnels’ projecting through the roof and allowing daylight into the spaces below.

Hyde + Hyde Architects - celestial section

Hyde + Hyde Architects - celestial section

Hyde + Hyde Architects - celestial section

Architect’s view

The idea of creating an internalized private world is a timeless idea. One that has been in use as long as people have lived in constructed dwellings.

In ancient Rome the impluvium is the sunken reflecting pool of the atrium in a Greek or Roman House. Designed to carry away the rainwater coming through the compluvium or the void within the courtyard opening.

The project introduces a similar poetic language that concentrates the focus of the courtyard and collects rainwater for harvesting. This becomes part of a dynamic play of rain water discharging into a central pool within the courtyard.

A large skylight is positioned above key living spaces such as the entry space, bedroom and living room. These project vertically above the grass roof plane to reinforce the buildings connection with the wider context of sky and cosmos.

Hydrological elements such as the changing weather patterns and clouds push over these portal volumes pointing to the sky above. At night and from the master bed, constellations can be seen tracing their arc from East to West across the Northern Hemisphere. 

The home is intimate at  140m2, yet connected to a grandeur through a subtle play of devices such as glazing and projecting roof volumes. The synergy of these create an appreciation for the micro and macro scales, conditions and relationships that are human and elemental in nature.

They are all focused in intensity and exist only because of the subterranean nature of the site itself.

Hyde + Hyde's sunken courtyard home

Hyde + Hyde’s sunken courtyard home

Project data

Location Langland Bay, South Wales
Type of project sunken Courtyard House
Client Private
Architect Hyde + Hyde Architects
Landscape architect Hyde + Hyde Architects
Planning consultant Geraint John Planning
Structural engineer TBC
M&E consultant TBC
Main contractor TBC
Funding Self-funded
Tender date August 2015
Completion date 2017
Contract duration TBC
Gross internal floor area 140m2
Form of contract and/or procurement TBC

Hyde + Hyde's sunken courtyard home

Hyde + Hyde’s sunken courtyard home

  • Comment

Have your say

You must sign in to make a comment

Please remember that the submission of any material is governed by our Terms and Conditions and by submitting material you confirm your agreement to these Terms and Conditions.

Links may be included in your comments but HTML is not permitted.