Taking an old idea and making it new again, Oxygen Villa is a pre-fabricated contemporary home that borrows heavily from traditional Arab architecture that naturally ventilates and reduces the sunlight. The paneled wall system is also kinetic, allowing the occupants to adjust the inner climate and light according to their needs. With a robust solar array, interior green house that also stores heat, House Studio has made a significant step towards designing low-impact housing for arid regions.
Oxygen Villa is very much about light and air, and the name more than implies the homes breathing new life into a classic Arabic form of architecture — the mashrabiya. Developed centuries ago, the mashrabiya is a bump out from a building that is clad with open wooden lattices to block the sun and capture cooling breezes while still maintaining privacy.
The Oxygen Villa uses an assortment of folding screens, which, like their forebears, can do triple duty. When only slightly folded, the screens funnel air in from below and exhaust from the top while keeping the interior private. Open them a little bit more and they let in indirect daylight and prevailing winds. The panels come in a few flavors with a choice for solid or lattice and glass and custom colors to personalize the house. Placed between steel columns on the exterior the walls can be quickly erected on a concrete pad.
The interior is just as interesting with a spacious three-story design and double height living room reminiscent of early modern homes emphasizing vertical elements. A central glass room hold a bed of glass granules that absorb daytime heat, which is later dispensed through the space at night. The thermal storage battery is an ideal way to regulate temperature inside if properly engineered, and while this one looks pretty small for a building they are clearly on the right track.