Emerging at the edge of a picturesque lake in the Scottish West Highlands, the humble Lochside House by Cambridge-based HaysomWardMiller Architects was just announced as the RIBA House of the Year for 2018. Established in 2001 as the Manser Medal, the House of the Year Award distinguishes the most innovative house design by a UK-based architect.
The winning announcement was made during a BBC broadcast of the TV show “Grand Designs”, which also explored the shortlisted homes selected from this year's longlist.
Read on for more about the Lochside House.
Tucked into a natural fold in the landscape, the Lochside House is a group of three volumes and a separate studio for the owner, who is a ceramic artist. The house is clad in local materials like burnt Scottish larch and is protected by a traditional drystone wall. Its simple aesthetic complements the surrounding rugged environment.
"It wasn't straightforward," said Tom Miller, the architect of the Lochside House. "It was only possible because we had a client with the uncompromising determination and vision to keep pushing us to achieve our best, and a contractor’s team for whom we have enormous respect — they seemed to thrive on the unique challenges posed by building on such an exposed and inaccessible site."
The 195m2 interior continues the home's pared-down aesthetic, featuring walls lined in white-oiled timber, surfaces skimmed with rough textured plaster, and large windows that show off the stunning landscape. Rooms are a comfortable size.
Since the house is in such a remote location, it's energy-efficient and completely off the grid to leave the surrounding landscape as undisturbed as possible. The house is equipped with its own solar power, water supply, and sewage treatment.
"Inside, the spaces merge with the artist owner's art collection, and there is an overwhelming sense of comfort, warmth and homeliness," commented Takero Shimazaki, Chair of the RIBA Jury. "It's an example of humble, grounded, contextual yet powerful architecture.”
All photos courtesy of RIBA.
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