In Antwerp, This Family Home Blends Seamlessly Into Its Woodland Setting
Local firm DDM Architectuur has designed ‘House BRAS’—a minimalist family home nestled into the woodlands on the outskirts of Antwerp, Belgium.
Situated amongst the trees on a site that used to serve as an allotment, the house has been designed to emphasize its natural surroundings. Whilst it may appear as a remote retreat, the property is in fact a busy family home situated close to a local town. To reference the woodland location, lead architect Dirk De Meyer and his team chose to clad the house in natural stone. The result is a monolithic structure which, instead of appearing incongruous, blends seamlessly into the environment as though it were a rock on a forest floor.
The footprint of the house is similar to a pathway, meandering through the trees. Glass passageways connect one zone to another. Inside, the property has been thoughtfully designed to suit the requirements of the family, with an ideal balance of shared spaces and isolated resting areas. The ground floor is divided into three zones that contain the main living area, an open kitchen, and a wellness room with a swimming pool and sauna. The first floor holds a master suite with views out over the surrounding landscape. A defining feature of the property is the immense double-height room that functions both as a shared living area and a solitary music room—this duality of usage is a perfect example of the harmonious design of the property. The architects have utilized vast glazed panels that stretch the height of the music room to harness a connection with the landscape. Large rocks have been repurposed as stepping stones to the property’s front door—another clever detail that roots the house to its surroundings.