Villa Birra

A bold new house proposed for a steep site beside a small lake in north Oxford.

The house is entered on the top floor, approached from a humdrum suburban road where there is no clue that the site suddenly drops away. The design maximises on this dramatic change in level and the huge vista that then opens up across the water.

The staircase from the entrance lobby down to the lower floors and the water’s edge has a wall of glass facing the view. On the top floor the roofs pitch upwards creating lofty internal living spaces with floor to ceiling glazing.

The house is designed as a hefty masonry butte punctured by huge windows which alternate in their aspect. The two wings step back as they climb from the lakeside, creating staggered terraces.  The offset openings and recesses create a strongly sculpted, syncopated, Jenga-esque composition, topped by jaunty feather-edged roof planes.

ox="0 0 128 128" xmlns:v="">