Chameleon villa overlooks a forest and
sits on a contour with an 11-meter difference of level between the arrival area and the river below. Given such location, the challenge was to create an architecture that truly connected with its surroundings and that integrated well with the topography of the site.
We worked on the idea of ‘landscaped architecture’, by blurring the boundaries between natural and built environments.
The buildings are situated on different levels of the land and they follow the contour lines in a way to take in the vantage points towards the river below and the forest across.
The different pavillions accomodate different functions where communal spaces are kept open towards the elements whereas the bedrooms and other more private spaces are closeable volumes.
A sense of discovery develops from the moment we land in the parking, across us we can only see an uninterrupted view of the forest ahead to then discover we are looking over the roof of the building below, to the moment we dive into a deep slit in the land and we find out it is the way to the guest bedrooms positioned at a lower level.
The main building which is on two levels follows the idea of rectangular volumes stacked on one another off-axis as if they were resting on the land.
The main building is composed of an outer frame and an inner frame. The former one protects the spaces from the elements and provides insulation. The supporting ‘camouflaged’ roofs provide a cooling effect to the spaces below and assist with rainwater collection.
Green systems considered for this project, besides passive cooling and sustainable materials selection, have been the use of solar panels to produce electricity and a water recycling and rainwater collection system for garden irrigation.