Amsterdam-based architect Barend Koolhaas – a former OMA employee and a nephew of Rem Koolhaas – designed House in Almen for a plot abutting an existing property in the eastern Netherlands village of Almen, after which the project is named.
The dark timber-clad walls comprise planks of painted Douglas fir, and feature small windows and gabled profiles designed to resemble local barns. The third side is glazed to offer views away from the built-up environment and into the countryside.
"This small house in the countryside is designed around a long panoramic window with a view into the garden and the surrounding landscape," said Koolhaas.
"To capture the panorama in the best possible way the glass facade was placed at an angle, giving the house its characteristic triangular floor plan."
"The longitudinal frame guides the eye on a 'walk' through the landscape," he added, "from a dense cluster of trees up close and out to the farm fields further away."
A wide door in the glass wall leads out from the open-plan living space into the garden, with the main entrance is located at the rear of the property.
Inside, a sliding wall separates a double bedroom from the living room in one point of the triangle, while a rectangular capsule to its rear encloses a smaller bedroom and bathroom, and frames an entrance hall.
A long wooden counter and units set against the back wall of the living space provides a kitchen work surface and storage, while a wood-burning stove designates a seating area beside the windows.
A tree-trunk column was also added to strengthen the connection between the interior and exterior spaces.
"The view is framed on the right side by a tree that was cut from the garden to support the roof and the floor above," said the architect. "This tree extends the forest just outside of the house into the interior."
Tucked into one point of the plan, a pale timber staircase leads to a master bedroom with an en-suite bathroom slotted in beneath the slope of the roof.
"The view disappears behind a stair that leads through a dizzying space of angled surfaces that result from the combination of a triangular plan and a triangular roof," added Koolhaas.
A large square skylight cut in the corrugated steel roof provides the primary light source for the upper floor.
Photography is by Jeroen Musch.