I’m becoming very encouraged because of a perceptible shift in attitude towards outdoor space in Kuwaiti clients. People are finally understanding the outstanding value that a well designed roof garden or courtyard can provide. Maybe it’s just a reaction to the wonderful weather, but it’s a good sign of progress. A recent project of ours at albabtain|design is an example of this desire for change. A modern home for a small family on an exceedingly small 250m2 plot of land on which the client insisted on privacy with abundant natural light and green spaces.
The design calls for a building that is 8.5m wide and has a narrow private garden on the first floor. The front facade has no discernible ‘windows’ yet the spaces inside are all very well lit through the use of large openings behind a series of louvers and vegetation (the L shaped thing on the above image). This residual space filters the harsh light while also creating privacy.
The client values privacy and natural light and this solution has achieved both through the use of the private garden on the first floor. A small water feature adds to the material palette of the space as well as acting as an ambient noise generator to dampen the sound of the street.
The image above is the view from the master bedroom. A sliding door allows access to the private garden to create a natural ventilation current and to merge indoor/outdoor. The louvers are fixed and allow light to get in, but prevents the neighbor from looking through. The garden space is around 2.5m wide and becomes part of the main living space once the sliding glass doors are opened.
The image above is a transition space before entering the home on the ground floor. We talked about body shock and the need for this kind of entrance before. Most home entrances in Kuwait are simple doors, when in fact an entrance has to be a space. This allows ones body to gradually adjust to the temperature, light, sound and humidity differences between indoor and outdoor without being subjected to body shock. The project is currently under construction.