The main goal throughout this entire project was to create a house that blends into its surroundings and disappears into the beautiful landscape. The topography of the land made is pretty easy to achieve that. The house which was named Witklipfontein Eco Lodge is located in Vredefort, South Africa. It was designed and built by studio GLH Architects and it covers an area of 400 square meters. The architects tried to incorporate the building into the existing landscape without having to terraform the land too much and managed to do so successfully. They gave the house stone and rammed earth walls and a green roof which helps to disguise it quite nicely.
The green roof allows the house to blend into the landscape seamlesslyThe house shows great respect towards its natural surroundings, taking advantage of this beauty
In a way, this fits the description of an underground home. However, that’s not necessarily how we’d describe it since it has numerous large openings and offers some beautiful and expansive views of its surroundings. The selection of raw materials used throughout the house and the overall design and aesthetic help the inhabitants reconnect to nature. At the same time, everything is interpreted in a modern way which makes this a really cool contemporary home. If the goal for the interior was to make this structure stand out as little as possible, the strategy for the interior design was a bit different. The spaces are very warm and welcoming with expansive open floor plans, large windows and lots of stylish decor accents.
The house is framed by a series of rammed earth walls and several stone wallsA series of photovoltaic panels installed on the roof provide the house with clean energyThe architects tried to use traditional building techniques as much as possible, turning this into an almost cement-free construction
The thick walls help to regulate the temperature inside the house throughout the entire yearThanks to the carefully-selected materials and finishes, the house looks very natural in this locationThe large windows and openings frame the beautiful pond, the garden and the distant viewsCertain sections of the house completely disappear into the landscape being reminiscent of hobbit homesInside, the social area are all part of a large double-height volumeThe interior design was also inspired by the natural surroundings, featuring a lot of warm and simple materialsAll in all, this green building is a beautiful example of a house in perfect harmony with nature