Two city-dwelling couples seeking quiet refuge in the countryside have found respite in this Atelier MIMA-designed timber holiday home. Located in Nivillac, a commune in northwestern France, the House JJ & S.M was designed by the Nantes-based studio as an elegant and purposefully understated antidote to hectic city living. The compact 90-square-meter home is clad in naturally finished timber to blend in with its wooded surroundings and is built to follow the existing slope towards the Vilaine River.
When approached from the driveway, House JJ & S.M looks deceptively plain. Topped with a slanted roof that follows the gentle slope, the home is entirely clad in vertically oriented strips of timber and is punctuated only by a few thin windows on the facades facing the road. However, the building opens up considerably on the other side with floor-to-ceiling panoramic glazing that wraps around the building and opens up to an outdoor terrace where the homeowners can sit and overlook views of the Vilaine River and valley.
The full-height glazing pours natural light into the interior, which features an elegant and minimalist design with pale timber furnishings and surfaces. The interior is split into two levels: the large open-plan living room, dining room, and kitchen on the lower level; and the two bedrooms located on the upper level connected by the entrance hall and bathroom. Sliding doors and partitions can be used to break up the space; sliding doors that separate the bedrooms from the kitchen can be recessed to open up views and a path for natural ventilation.
Images via Atelier MIMA