Alhumaidhi Architects | Projects | Kuwait | MT Villa

Client Direction

Our client, a small family comprised of a husband, wife and their two kids, wanted big, high ceilings with a view of the garden from most rooms and spaces within the houses. The challenge? The plot is located in a a busy residential area, with neighbors on three sides of the house, and also overlooks a main highway and neighborhood park, making privacy a big concern.

 

The main question was thus: how could we maximize the entry of light into the house, without sacrificing privacy? How could we minimize heat gain, but not at the expense of having the house feel airy and bright?

Project Plan

Clean, contemporary aesthetic designed around the needs of a young family with 2 children

Utilize louvres with various orientations, scales, and densities to maximize both privacy and provide shading from harsh south-west sun exposure

Central garden, with most spaces within house to have access to view of garden

Different finishes of the same stone to play with texture and color

Local design elements while still ensuring an overall modern feel

Utilizing Louvres

Despite the villa’s location on a streetfront, we knew the three bedrooms and master suite would need to have the utmost privacy. To ensure both privacy and light entry, we decided to utilize floor-to-ceiling louvres to provide the best solution for our client.When working with louvres, both size and scale are everything. With MT Villa, the true architectural challenge was that of scale: our client wanted high ceilings on both floors, so we knew we needed to scale our louvres in proportion to the exterior of the house.

From the outside, the house needed to appear balanced and condensed (despite being physically larger than its neighbors) and the louvres needed to provide somewhat of a visual illusion of being proportional to the mass as a whole.

 

When used incorrectly, it is easy for louvres to appear constricting or odd. For the master bedroom, we placed each louvre at a specific angle, with density increasing towards the bed (maximizing privacy) and opening up toward the rest of the room (maximizing light). The orientation of each was fixed according to our studies of sun diagrams, ensuring natural light would always flow into the area. Furthermore, each louvre was placed in a way that would limit the amount of exposure any passersby would be granted into the house, creating the maximum sense of privacy for the space.

Seamless Movement

On the ground floor, we adopted a U-shaped plan for the house, hugging a central, landscaped garden. At the center, we built a covered terrace to anchor a kitchen, reception space, and the living area. To create a sense of a continuous flow between the interior and exterior spaces, we utilized foldable floor-to-ceiling glass windows to line the edge of the terrace. When opened, the space allows for free flow and movement from the kitchen, reception space and living area to the outdoor garden.

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