Volcanic stone wall hides doorway
into B25 house by PK Arkitektar

| 3 comments
 

A wall clad in slabs of red volcanic stone conceals the entrance to this otherwise minimal white house in a suburb of Reykjavík, Iceland, by local office PK Arkitektar (+ slideshow).

Doorway hidden in volcanic stone wall of B25 house by PK Arkitektar

The private home was designed by PK Arkitektar with a simple and solid facade that restricts views of the interior from the street, providing privacy in a busy suburban neighbourhood.

Doorway hidden in volcanic stone wall of B25 house by PK Arkitektar

"The house was conceived to be viewed from the street as a singular solid mass, and its entrance is hidden from the street," the architects pointed out.

Doorway hidden in volcanic stone wall of B25 house by PK Arkitektar

A recessed surface of red rhyolite stone is framed by a white wall that forms the front of the building and shelters a doorway incorporated into the stone surface.

Doorway hidden in volcanic stone wall of B25 house by PK Arkitektar

A vertical glass section interrupts the front facade and permits views through the central circulation spaces of the home.

Doorway hidden in volcanic stone wall of B25 house by PK Arkitektar

This glazed void helps to separate the private spaces from shared areas inside the house and allows daylight to permeate both floors of the property.

Doorway hidden in volcanic stone wall of B25 house by PK Arkitektar

The facade at the northeast corner is separated from the glazed wall and floats above the ground, creating a small gap that lets light reach all the way to the basement level.

Doorway hidden in volcanic stone wall of B25 house by PK Arkitektar

From the entrance at the level of the adjacent road, the site slopes down towards a sheltered garden and the home's lower storey is partly submerged in the slope.

Doorway hidden in volcanic stone wall of B25 house by PK Arkitektar

The rear of the house is more open, with both levels featuring expansive windows that look out onto the garden.

Doorway hidden in volcanic stone wall of B25 house by PK Arkitektar

"The sloping plot allows for the basement to be hidden and provides magnificent views of the surrounding nature of the Alftanes peninsula," the architects added.

Doorway hidden in volcanic stone wall of B25 house by PK Arkitektar

Staircases on either side of the building descend to the basement level and a door on one facade is set into a

Doorway hidden in volcanic stone wall of B25 house by PK Arkitektar

Sliding doors lead from the kitchen to a large balcony for outdoor dining that ends in a staircase connecting this space with the garden below.

Doorway hidden in volcanic stone wall of B25 house by PK Arkitektar

Gravel surfaces surrounding the house reference the barren landscape of the local countryside, with a lawn containing a single tree at the rear providing the only area of greenery.

Doorway hidden in volcanic stone wall of B25 house by PK Arkitektar

Photography is by Rafael Pinho.

Here's some more information from the architects:


B25, Reykjavík, Iceland

This private residence is located in a compact suburban neighbourhood and the plot slopes down from street level towards its southwest corner.

Doorway hidden in volcanic stone wall of B25 house by PK Arkitektar

The house was conceived to be viewed from the street as a singular solid mass and its entrance is hidden from the street. By contrast, the rear aspect, with private outdoor areas, has a sense of openness and permeability. The monolithic mass conceals a recess, which hides the front door.

Doorway hidden in volcanic stone wall of B25 house by PK Arkitektar

The front volume is lightened by an incision, which represents the interior boundary between private and public areas. A light well behind the front façade permits daylight into both floors in the northeast part of the house. The sloping plot allows for the basement to be hidden and provides magnificent views of the surrounding nature of the Alftanes peninsula.

Doorway hidden in volcanic stone wall of B25 house by PK Arkitektar
Lower floor plan - click for larger image

Red Rhyolite is employed here as cladding on the recessed surfaces of the otherwise white monolith. The front yard is a minimal desert of gravel and stone, greenery being restricted to a patch at the rear where a single tree stands. In stark contrast with the green walls and lush gardens common to Arnarnes, the arid treatment of the front yard applied here is more in line with the country's nature and landscapes.

Doorway hidden in volcanic stone wall of B25 house by PK Arkitektar
Upper floor plan - click for larger image
  • Concerned Citizen

    While the street and side elevations present elegantly simple masses, the garden elevation abandons all that. I understand the need to expand the view to the fullest, but could the same massing concept have been used?

    • bwd

      Suppose one might have rotated the outside stair 90 degrees and chosen another camera angle from the garden, this would create the image of more “purity.” Unless you truly crave a dressed-up semi-habitable monolith.

    • Alberto

      Exactly. Thought the same. It loses unity at the garden front. Front and garden façades look like different buildings.