Allow us to come right out and say that we are legitimately blown away by the German home in the spotlight today. Here's a great example of how and where to invest your money, when you're working with a limited budget. Every piece in here, every structural element, every colour utilised comes together to work like a dream. You won't see any accents or statement pieces, in fact you will encounter only very few furniture. And the few that are there blend into the interior landscape so seamlessly, you'd be hard pushed to imagine anything else there.
Situated a few miles away from the port city of Hamburg, in Blankensee, this modernist home was designed by HGK following the renowned Bauhaus art school design model, which is defined by its fusion of creativity and manufacturing.
Just because you're on a budget doesn't mean you can't make the most of what you have. The key is to invest it in things that do the work, and some more. Read on to find out how the architects here managed to do just that…
Picture perfect modernism
Does that look like German efficiency to you? If you answered yes, you are very right.
Although the owners were initially toying with the idea of a prefabricated house (a relatively cheap option), the architects worked their way around it, instead simply opting for concrete cubic blocks that then turned out to be an even cheaper alternative and one that doesn't jar in the lush surroundings. By keeping the design simple yet extremely chic, the costs were kept minimal while no sacrifices were made.
The large airy glass windows and doors are ideal for a setting like this: it not only allows for ample natural light but also ensures that the house doesn't appear like a concrete block in a natural surrounding. There's even a sun deck in there!
This is actually the front facade of the house. While it's more straightforward than the backyard, it retains the cubic modernist elements while injecting them with a dose of creativity.
The gravelled pathway on one side is offset by the smartly illuminated polished concrete steps that lead up to the house where you're greeted by the only accent piece in the house - wooden panels. These go a long way in cutting the harshness of the grey concrete while giving it an air of warmth. The naturalised surroundings also contribute to the inviting feeling of the house.
You'd think that all-grey in one room is design suicide. But here, the architects make it work by giving a different textural and visual element to everything in this room. The exposed concrete ceilings provides a great contrast to the Pandomo (a cheaper option for concrete and cement finishes) floors, while the chaise lounge, even while being grey, breaks up the monotony by being the only piece of furniture in the room. Strategically-placed ambient lighting ensure that the room never looks cold or uninviting. Sometimes the most basic materials can have an incredible visual impact. If you're in the search for optimised flooring, give our experts a look-see.
And don't miss out on the discreet but slick modern fireplace on the right. Now imagine sitting in this room on a cold, rainy day with a glass of wine and the fireplace blazing...
Baring it all
Looking at the kitchen here, you might think these guys have gone a bit cuckoo. Where's the cooking top? Where's the working space? No pots and pans? It's all there, just cleverly concealed or integrated. The kitchen island accommodates a modern electric stove and a sink with enough storage space underneath. And check out that ultra modern chimney/hood with embedded light fittings.
The floor-to-ceiling oak panels conceal the refrigerator and holds more storage space. Both the white and the timber converge harmoniously with the grey floors and ceilings.
Not so basic
The first floor, which has both the bedroom and bathroom, has lesser space than downstairs so the design has been kept even more stark and minimal. A concrete stairway takes you up to this tiny hall where the floors are again set in Pandomo. Lean on the glass balustrade and you can peer down into the living space creating a sense of free movement. The recessed ceiling lighting fixtures here, in addition to its functionality, also acts as a subtle design element. And if you were wondering where the owners of the house store away all their stuff, it's all in the storage units on the left that have been integrated into the wall so that it doesn't take up unnecessary floor space.
If you enjoyed this space, be sure to check out: A sleek home of modern class.