No your eyes aren’t deceiving you—this beautiful mountain chalet is in fact leaning outwards, creating the illusion that it could topple over at a moment’s notice. Znameni Ctyr Architekti designed this sturdy and beautiful holiday home to replace a former dilapidated building in the Czech Republic’s Krkonoše Mountains National Park. The gabled end walls of this contemporary chalet, named Chalet Saint Peter, are angled outwards to help protect the walls from rainwater.
Though the former chalet was demolished, Znameni Ctyr Architekti integrated local architecture features into their design of Chalet Saint Peter rather than create a completely modern design. The new mountain chalet blends together traditional alpine architecture with contemporary elements to create a comfortable and attractive home that blends in with its forested surroundings. The home spans four stories, two of which are built into the sloped terrain and constructed with a sturdy granite flagstone base. A copper roof fans out overtop the home.
The majority of the building is made with a laminated spruce frame clad in vertical and diagonal strips of red cedar that will develop a beautiful patina over time. Oak-framed windows punctuate the exterior and are mostly rectangular save for the small angled windows on the attic level. The interior is also finished almost entirely in wood. Rather than place the communal levels on the ground floor and tuck the bedrooms on the upper levels, the architects reversed this arrangement and placed the kitchen, living room, and dining area on the first floor, which boasts the best landscape views. The attic, located on the floor above, also contains a small living area.
“The gable walls of chalets in Krkonose mountains are often stepwise overhanged above the ground level. Our design utilizes this characteristic element and transforms this stepwise overhang into a gradual extension of the gable wall in the outward direction, so the crest of the roof is visibly longer than the actual length of the house and its base,” write the architects, adding that this setup also helps prolong the lifespan of the wood. “This house with its low ceiling height and careful placement in the sloping terrain acts as if the house had grown from the surrounding nature, and the main attention itself by the viewer is drawn by a silhouette of the roof massing.”
Images via Znameni Ctyr Architekti, © Tomas Soucek