A House in Monteverdi / Lebanon by Maroun Lahoud Architecte
Project Details: Location: Monteverdi, Lebanon Type: Residential - Houses Architects: Maroun Lahoud Architecte – www.marounlahoud.com Program: a large platform overlooking the valley; three master bedrooms, a wine cellar, a screening room, a semi-professional editing studio, a kitchen, an office, a large reception area and a panoramic terrace. Client: Private. Schedule: beginning of studies in October 2011, building permit in autumn 2012, delivery during the second quarter of 2014. Surface: 640 m². Estimated cost: 1.6 M€.
The house is nested on the lush green but steep hills, just south of Monteverdi, a chic neighboring suburb of Beirut, on a vast land of 2000 square meters with an astounding 50 degree slope.
The client’s requested program was clear and straight forward: to provide “a large multipurpose space”.
Faced with a double complexity, the contextual as well as the programmatic one, the answer emerges radically poignant: “tilting” a parcel of the land (a horizontal livable volume as a platform) and “punching” the volume with a central courtyard to bring in the natural light, temperature and humidity, an “oasis” concept, an inherent tradition of the region.
This square monolithic volume overlooks the green hill with the spectacular views of the valley. Its sleek horizontality is majestic in its boldness, in full contrast with the slope of the natural surrounding environment, thus creating a poetic dialogue of light and shadow, a celebration of earth and sky.
In order to achieve this simple yet complex manoeuvre of “tilting” the land, two gigantic concrete beams, embedded in the ground, become the structural foundation of this square metal box. The main terrace overlooking the valley faces south, flanked by vegetations on both east and west sides. The more private quarters include: downstairs, a wine cellar, a screening room and an editing studio; whereas the upper level houses the master bedrooms. The parking and service areas are on the ground floor with the lower sloping facade.
Ground Level Plan
First Level Plan
Second Level Plan
The large terrace seems to float in the open sky, defying the laws of gravity, and celebrating the natural beauty of the landscape, by increasing the drama.