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Haus Bavaria, Regensburg, Germany

Thursday 27 Dec 2012

A contemporary Italian house in a medieval German town

Carlo Berarducci 
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Award Entry

Fusion of client's love for Italian design with demand for contextually appropriate building 

In the historic centre of Regensburg, Bavaria, Germany, Haus Bavaria was built to replace a demolished building - part of a continuous "quint" - reconstructed in line with new building criteria and energy standards. The new building is a private home with a swimming pool and sports training area inside for a German couple in love with Italy.

The architect was tasked to answer opposing requirements from the city and from the clients. The city asked the architect to maintain continuity with the character of the city's buildings in context with the main materials used and the effect of seriality in the façade openings and the pitched roof. The clients however wanted a house that stood unique in character and in the choice of materials, and that expressed a sense of Italian luxury. Furthermore the clients asked for a garage for two cars with a 6-metre wide door whilst the city does not permit garage doors wider than 3.5 metres.

The answer is a very neutral and naked facade but with window dimensions as wide as possible, with an invisible garage door finished in the same white plaster of the facades. Rich Italian materials such as Carrara marble, brown granite, leather coverings, polished furnishings, and teak floorings finish the interior of Haus Bavaria. Outside ultra-light crystal railings without a handrail, together with invisible windows frame hidden behind the wall and mirrored glass reflecting the buildings on the other side of the road add an effect of abstraction and dematerialization.

Haus Bavaria therefore sits between the adjacent buildings without altering or contradicting the continuity of the "quint" or the character of the city, but at the same time reveals its contemporary and unique look asked for from the clients.

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