Modern homes are becoming smaller and smaller, as people become more energy conscious and minimalism becomes more prominent and popular. People are more content with living in smaller spaces and with less superfluous objects and amenities, opting for simple, streamlined, and high-quality lifestyles.
Today we will look at a house that is exemplary in this ethic, designed by NanArchitects, based in Pontevedra, Spain. Less is certainly more, and this maxim of minimalism can be seen to be operationally defined in this project. If you need some background on what minimalism actually entails, take a look at this handy guide we put together on the topic.
We are sure that you will find this house in Villagarcia as charming as it is trendy and sustainable, but we won’t decide that for you. Come see for yourself!
This modern house is situated on farmland in Villagracia, an area consisting largely of nondescript buildings. For this reason, the low-lying rectangular structure of the house on the lowest level of the farm keeps a low profile and is more private, while relating more to the surrounding landscape than its towering neighbours.
The front façade of the house is discreet with only the tiniest window, ensuring privacy on the street side of the home. The structure of the home also includes an open parking bay for a single vehicle. The property is thus one integrated mass, pure and simple.
As we can see from this angle, the house is actually quite tiny. It consists simply of one long rectangle with no full divisions. On this side of the structure, the building is opened up completely with glass panels down the length of the house instead of solid walls. This expands the available space inside the home, whilst also allowing panoramic views of the outdoors.
The project also received an energy rating of A, which is excellent. The building energy rating (BER) system labels buildings on a scale of A-G, with A-rated structure the most energy-efficient, and G the least. These ratings are awarded by each country’s Sustainable Energy Authority.
The house is reminiscent of a shotgun house, a modest style of housing popular in New Orleans in the late 1800’s and early 1900’s. Shotgun houses are narrow rectangular residences, usually no wider than 3.5 meters, and with the rooms arranged one behind the other with doors leading directly into the next room in the same position without hallways. It is rumoured that the name comes from the idea that if you open all of the doors in the house, you can shoot a bullet through the front door and it will pass right out the back without any obstruction.
This home is similar in style, except that there are no walls between the different rooms, but rather one, long open-plan space. This gives the home a cosy atmosphere, but is also sweetly nostalgic about a building style now mostly forgotten.
Here we can see the kitchen space to the right, and a restroom area to the left of the picture. The kitchen is in the one-wall layout, allowing for convenience and proximity to all kitchen functions in a small space. The cabinetry in the kitchen space is also optimised, in order to ensure there is sufficient storage space without leaving objects exposed and cluttering the area.
The restroom area consists of an enclosed toilet, with a wash-up area to the left. We can see that there is also a handy pull-down blind covering the wash-up area in this picture, ensuring privacy from the glass windows at the back of the home, when necessary.
At the furthest end of the house, we find the lovely and comfortable bedroom area. This space is somewhat divided from the rest of the house by a fireplace (seen in the third picture). Not only does the area have a place for a generous bed, but also for a walk-in wardrobe. Even when you have a small home, you still have priorities!
The bedroom is also in close proximity to the bathroom area, basically making it en-suite.
The colours are subdued and neutral, enlarging the space, whilst retaining a natural, earthy and comfortable atmosphere. Perfect for a cosy and calm bedroom retreat.
Lastly, we turn ourselves around 180 degrees to see what it looks like on the farm from inside the house. We are sure you are with us when we say this is not a bad view at all. Situated next to an orchard or vineyard, the inhabitants of this home will have year-long views of the beautiful fruit trees in there varying colours and seasonal transfigurations.
Here we also get a sense of the furnishing and decorations of the home, which are all trendy and tasteful. Wicker chairs in modern forms add an eclectic flair to the spaces, whilst rich textures in the rugs and curtains make the space feel more homey and relaxed. What it all boils down to is well-considered simplicity.