When it came time for London-based architect Catja de Haas to build her own home outside of the city, her first objective was to design a sustainable retreat that, although modern in aesthetic and scale, would blend in seamlessly with nature. Designed in collaboration with Takero Shimazaki Architects, the resulting Burwood House was built to Passivhaus standards featuring sustainable CLT cladding, a green roof and several energy-reducing strategies.
Located in southeast England, the Burwood home design consists of three block volumes topped with a green roof. The two principle forms are linked together by a third volume, which wraps around the side of the structure. Large roof overhangs create several shaded outdoor spaces, and help regulate solar gains in the summer time.
Clad in a light-hued oak CLT panels, the home holds court in an idyllic setting, enveloped by a thick forest to the back and a rolling green countryside that expands to the seaside.
As for the home’s building materials, the architect wanted to use this picturesque natural setting to create a home design that is harmonious with nature. “Burwood is a type of wood that grows in existing woods, becoming a new tree”, de Haas explains. “It is the name of the house, and we hope the house will itself slowly disappear in the green.”
In addition to its timber cladding, the home uses floor-to-ceiling glass panels on the ground level to further blend the home into its setting. Surrounded by several sliding glass doors that provide optimal natural ventilation, the main living area is a light-filled oasis.
The soft, neutral color palette found on the exterior continues throughout the home’s expansive interior. Built-in furniture, along with oak frame doors and concrete touches create an airy minimalist atmosphere that is both modern and welcoming.
Images via Catja de Hass Architects