Opposite House by RZLBD, Opposite House by Reza Aliabadi, Toronto contemporary architecture, Canadian lakeside architecture

Located on the Scarborough Bluffs, the Opposite House is split into two halves with different features. The northern street-facing half is clad in dark brick and houses the foyer, bathrooms, and an office space that can be converted into bedrooms. Few windows punctuate this side of the house in order to minimize heat loss in winter.

Opposite House by RZLBD, Opposite House by Reza Aliabadi, Toronto contemporary architecture, Canadian lakeside architecture

In contrast, the southern half that overlooks Lake Ontario is built with white stucco and opens up to the outdoors with a 10-foot-high curtain wall that runs the entire length of the home and brings natural light and views into the communal spaces. An east-west corridor that runs the home’s entire 146-foot-long length and is bookended by two outsized windows and bedrooms joins the two volumes.

Opposite House by RZLBD, Opposite House by Reza Aliabadi, Toronto contemporary architecture, Canadian lakeside architecture

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“Both outside and in, the Opposite House is at once familiar yet different, spectacular yet comfortable, private as well as public – presenting a study in subtly rendered juxtapositions,” writes the architect. “Two concepts are at work here: Louis Kahn’s “servant and served” maxim, wherein private, back-of-the-house functions are placed on one side, balanced by public relaxation on the other; and the“phototropic” nature of plants, which remain rooted in the earth while their heads blossom towards the sun – interpreted here as a north side wrapped in dark-black, textured brick and a south side presented in bright glass and smooth white stucco.”

+ RZLBD

Images via RZLBD