We're officially dubbing the Kodaira-shi Residence by Suppose Design Office "the Tent House". Covered with a tarpaulin on the street-facing sides, this small residence in Kodaira City in northwest Tokyo is all about privacy. The tent extends out from the roof to the street where it encloses a private garden area for the family and sliding glass windows open up the living room completely to the outdoors, so in a way, it's almost like urban camping. Besides an immediate connection with its outdoor garden, the Tent House also enjoys shade, natural ventilation and daylighting via large rooftop skylights.
The 93 sq m (1,001 sq ft), two-story home sits on a corner in a residential area. The owners wanted a small garden and yard for their children, but also desired privacy. The translucent tarpaulin, which stretches from the roof to the street, creates a covered space next to the house that fit the bill perfectly. From the outside, passersby can hardly see through it, so the family can enjoy their garden and living room in peace. Sliding windows can open up the downstairs for an immediate connection with the outdoors, or the windows can be sealed up against the cold or weather. The tent also acts as a shade screen against the sun, keeping the house cool with natural ventilation.
Downstairs, there is an open space with a sunken living room, kitchen, dining area and the home’s single bathroom. A linear staircase leads up to the second floor and the private rooms. Unlike western homes though, the upstairs bedrooms are essentially one large open room. The master “bedroom” sits on the far side, there is a “bedroom” in the middle, and finally a study space on the near side with a desk. These bedrooms are essentially alcoves without real walls or closing doors, and a long wardrobe along one wall provides storage space for all of the family’s things. Skylights from the roof wash the upstairs in natural light, which floods through voids in the floor all the way to the ground level. Although we certainly applaud their sense of small space living, doors might be nice addition to this home.