Nottoscale build residence to reflect the surrounding landscape of the Nevada desert
The Rondolino Residence is a vacation home for Fabrizio Rondolino, an independent writer from Rome, Italy, situated on an immense flat stretch of land in the Nevada high desert that is covered with sage bushes and surrounded by mountains on all four sides.
One of the main design objectives was to enhance the experience of the surrounding landscape and to give the feeling of being in the middle of the desert from inside the home. In order to achieve this, Nottoscale raised the building on a concrete plinth that appears to emerge out of the desert landscape and introduced large floor-to-ceiling windows, which give the impression of floating over, while being completely immersed in, the desert landscape. Nottoscale also took great care to place the windows so that they frame special aspects of the surrounding landscape. The long and low window in the kitchen, for example, frames a beautiful mountain range which can only be seen while sitting down at the dining table.
The colour and material palette of the house is very simple in order to reflect the surrounding landscape. Raw concrete relates to the rocks and surrounding mountains, wood siding and flooring are very similar in tone to the earth and dry shrubs around the house, soft white walls provide a neutral background to the wonderful light in the desert and touches of red in the furniture relate to the extreme climate of the desert.
The house measures 1,200 sf and has three bedrooms, two bathrooms, an office, a storage and utility room as well as a large open kitchen, dining room and living room area that can extend onto the deck when the large sliding doors are opened. A large 900 sf deck with a sunken-in hot tub connects the two building modules while creating a transition zone between the inside and outside. Full-height sliding glass doors can be completely opened so that the outside and inside of the building seamlessly merge into one.
Numerous active and passive sustainable systems were incorporated to take advantage of natural ventilation, shading and thermal mass. The use of energy efficient materials such as SIP panels and double pane glass provide a highly insulated envelope, which in turn helps to reduce heating and cooling requirements.