Aerial view of Red House by David Kohn

"Ordinary yet quirky" Red House in Dorset named UK's best new home

The Red House in southwest England by London studio David Kohn Architects has been named the RIBA's House of the Year for 2022.

Located in rural Dorset, the two-storey family home is distinguished by its playful yet restrained exterior that juxtaposes patterned red brickwork with bright green details.

Aerial view of The Red House in Dorset
The Red House is the RIBA House of the Year for 2022

The House of the Year award is awarded annually by the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) to the UK's best new architect-designed house.

Red House by David Kohn Architects was selected by the jury as the winner for 2022 in recognition of the way that it "confronts our expectations of a house in a beautiful setting".

Red-brick house in Dorset
The home in southwest England was designed by David Kohn Architects

"Ordinary yet quirky, extravagant although utilitarian, the Red House confronts our expectations of a house in a beautiful setting that never wants to settle into being one way or another," said head of the jury and architect Taro Tsuruta.

"An aesthetic and sustainable building with future-proof functionality, it draws on architectural references from [William] Morris to [James] Stirling – with many surprises throughout which were applauded by all the jury members."

Exterior of Red House by David Kohn Architects
It has a redbrick exterior with green details

Created for a couple and their young daughter, the two-storey Red House was intended to be as an eccentric interpretation of traditional British housing.

In an interview with Dezeen earlier this year, David Kohn Architects' founder David Kohn said that the home "appeals to the image of an ordinary house, but is built with the material and constructional integrity of a building designed to endure and age well".

Exterior of RIBA House of the Year 2022
It was praised by the jury as "ordinary yet quirky"

Reflecting on the win, Kohn said that he "could not be more delighted".

"The jury have chosen to support architecture that is intimate, playful, colourful, and engages both with its context and history," Kohn continued.

Interior of Red House by David Kohn
The home was designed for a couple with a young daughter

Behind its patterned red brickwork, green details and oversized eaves, the home has bright and spacious interiors organised around six "storage towers" containing closets, bathrooms and utility spaces.

A showpiece of the interior is a grand sculptural staircase, which sweeps up to the first floor past a projecting bay window.

White bedroom of Red House by David Kohn
It contains bright and spacious interiors

The interiors were designed to be future-proof, meaning they are suited to future accessibility needs.

These accessibility measures include the presence of a lift, rounded corners on built-in furniture and grab rails on cupboards.

White-walled kitchen with curved seating
Furnishings have curved edges

The Red House was revealed as this year's winner during the final episode of the Channel 4 television series Grand Designs: House of the Year.

Over the four weeks, the series has seen the 20-strong longlist whittled down to just seven projects.

Alongside the Red House, these included Seabreeze by RX Architects, the Dutch Barn by Sandy Rendel Architects and the Mews House Deep Retrofit by Prewett Bizley Architects.

The Surbiton Springs house by Surman Weston, the Suffolk Cottage by Haysom Ward Miller and the Library House by Macdonald Wright Architects were also shortlisted.

Curved staircase in Red House by David Kohn
There is a sculptural staircase

This year's winner was selected by a jury consisting of chair Tsuruta, founder of Tsuruta Architects, and architect Alison Brooks, the founder of last year's winning studio Alison Brooks Architects.

Also on the panel were designer Yinka Ilori, director at Architecture for London Ben Ridley, founder and co-founder of Tikari Works Nicola Tikari.

Hallway of Red House by David Kohn
It was revealed as the winner in the final episode Grand Designs: House of the Year

Last year's winner was House on the Hill by Alison Brooks Architects – a home in Gloustershire comprising an art-filled black extension and a Georgian farmhouse that now contains a gallery.

Past winners also include a dwelling in Edinburgh with secret hatches and a residence in Kent that references the hop-drying towers.

The photography is by Will Pryce.