Marc Koehler Architects was reluctant to lose the industrial-chic character of a former harbor cantina in Amsterdam when asked to transform the space into apartments, so the Dutch design firm did what they could to brighten up the space while leaving its former identity intact. Comprised of four "houses" with a mixture of closed-off cubicles and open spaces, the energy-efficient project is flooded with natural light.
Deeply contemporary and minimalist, the double height apartments have timber structural walls that double as closet and wardrobe spaces. The upper level, called “roof terraces,” feature dining, working, and cooking spaces in addition to a small guest house – all of which are reached via a series of elevated mesh footbridges. This area also boasts fantastic views of the city’s adjacent harbor.
Large windows ensure that plenty of natural light penetrates all of the small “houses,” while closed off rooms help to conserve the overall energy load. Designed with flexibility in mind, the large open spaces are easily expanded should future need arise. While potentially too stark for some, the House Like Village will strike a chord with hip urban dwellers.
Photographs by Marcel van der Burg