“House of Curves in-and-around Boxes”
From the front gate of the house, one only sees an elevated linear block. However, upon entering the compound, the full complexity of the house is slowly unveiled. This complexity comes in the form of dynamic spaces created by the overlapping of curvilinear and rectilinear geometries. At the first storey, one is first welcomed by a free-standing curved wall that defines the entrance. Upon entry into the house, one sees that each of the three main spaces of the first storey – the living, dining and entertainment rooms – is articulated as a rectilinear pavilion placed around the lap pool. Inserted in the space between the dining and the entertainment rooms is another curvilinear element – a staircase with a semi-circular landing.
Located opposite the staircase is a curved glass-block wall that encloses the bathroom at the first storey. Just outside this curved glass-block wall is a porous curved wall that serves as a second skin wrapping around the different rectilinear volumes to create in-between spaces. All these curvilinear elements are extended vertically for more than a storey. They appear as elements that pierce through the floor slabs unifying the spaces of the different storeys, especially when there are vertical voids directly next to them.
Besides horizontal curvilinear elements clearly expressed in the plans, there is also a big vertical curvilinear element that is articulated sectionally. A big curved folding roof that begins as the floor slab of the master bedroom at second storey wraps around the master bedroom and hovers over the three storey spaces to create a large open-air attic space with a gym, roof garden and jacuzzi at the third storey. In a way, this house is not unlike the 1920s “white villas” that Le Corbusier designed in that the interplay between the curvilinear and the rectilinear elements was one of the key features deployed to celebrate the “free plan” and the plasticity of reinforced concrete construction.