Social Cool – The Interlace

Interlace

Traditionally, the association between individuals and buildings was solely a functional one, where a house was built with four walls and a roof and, hey presto, job done. A new generation of architects have a different image of buildings that go way beyond just providing a roof over our heads. They aim to not only produce a practical structure, but also to create housing that will nurture and encourage community living.

Welcome Büro Ole Scheeren, an international design studio that practices architecture, urbanism and research,  And they have certainly packed a lot of thought-provoking architecture into those five years with some exciting, global projects and German Ole Scheeren, founder of Büro OS, has become a huge success with his experimental architecture.

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Minimalist Bliss

FRONT

A city of stark, utilitarian, Soviet-style buildings constructed in a rush during the 1950s is probably the last place you would expect to find a striking example of modern, cutting-edge minimalist architecture.
But in an otherwise unremarkable suburban setting on the outskirts of Chişinău – the capital city of Moldova – is Line Architect’s The Piano House. It’s a sleek, single-story private house that comes close to epitomising minimalism at its finest.
Travelling out from the centre of Chişinău , the surroundings morph within a matter of minutes into the same monotony of characterless, low-rise homes found in suburbia the world over. The familiar sameness is suspended, at least momentarily, when you reach the Piano House,  a pleasing-to-the-eye euphony of glass, wood and concrete that sits easily in its trapezoidal plot, bordered on three sides by more conventional homes. It’s a sleek, single-story, 264-square-metre family home with three bedrooms, an inner courtyard and outdoor swimming pool.

The front facade is subtle and signified, a car port that fits elegantly into the overall aesthetic. There’s no sense of it being an afterthought or add-on, as is all too often the case with car ports or other external aspects of the house. It’s flanked on two sides with reinforced ferro-concrete walls, with a flat surface of wood and glass to the back – the three elements coming together to create not just an ideal shelter but also the perfect frame. The sleek lines and low profile give the front of the house an unassuming and modest appearance; this isn’t a house that could ever be accused of arrogance or ostentation.

 HOUSE
 The same sense of refined minimalism continues inside the house. The principle materials are, again, glass, concrete and wood, and the white floors give a sense of calm elegance and sophistication that runs from one space to the next. The lighting throughout is unobtrusive, and there’s a gentle harmony and flow that moves throughout the entire house. Every minor detail has clearly been thought out with care and exactness, and there’s nothing arbitrary or decorative for the point alone of decoration. There’s no element or feature that feels out of place or wrong. Rather, everything belongs, everything is where it should be and how it should be.

 

 SIDE
The design and construction of the Piano House is the work of local architect Dmitrii Petrov, the founder and main creative within LINE Architects. A committed and passionate minimalist, Petrov prioritises pureness and simplicity within his designs. The firm works with clients of all sorts, offering a full range of architectural and design services. And it oversees the entire process – from initial sketches to final construction – with the same care and exactness that it demands of every project. Its concepts might be simple, but they are unique, original and created with a respect and understanding for the uniqueness of each site. Unlike many other architects, LINE Architects commit to focusing on the creative process, not the commercial process.
 INSIDE HOUSE
There’s an odd and interesting conundrum between the Piano House and its environment, dominated as it is by Soviet-era brutalist architecture. In some respects, the two approaches couldn’t be more different, but, at the same time, they’re undeniably alike in their quest for efficiency and practicality. However, while the former pursues this to the detriment of all aesthetic considerations, the latter achieves it in way that raises the aesthetic to a supreme level.

Invest in the Alps: An interview with Robert Jérôme of 360 | Vox

Robert Jérôme
Robert Jérôme

Everyone knows that the Alps are Europe’s best winter playground, but when summer comes around and the snows melt, the jagged mountain range says hello to blue skies, warm temperatures and flower-filled meadows. So, ever fancied investing in an apartment in a resort that offers guaranteed snow in the winter and an 18-hole golf course in the summer? Well, read on.

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Malta: a cool climate that’s hot on the quality-of-life index

The value of Portomaso property has risen by 400%. Might this reflect property expectations by overseas buyers for Tas Sellum and Ta' Monita residences, too?
The value of Portomaso property has risen by 400%. Might this reflect property expectations by overseas buyers for Tas Sellum and Ta’ Monita residences, too?

It’s official – Malta has the best climate on earth.

Malta was one of two countries that were tied for first place with the title of Best Climate, according to the Quality of Life Index issued by the International Living magazine last year. Sharing top honours was Zimbabwe.

Yet a Mediterranean climate (over 5 hours of sunshine a day) isn’t all that Malta has to offer. Malta’s many other virtues in the 9 categories of the IL index combined to earn it 3rd place overall in the Index, pipped to the post by the U.S. and New Zealand. That ranking speaks volumes for the size of Malta’s quality offering relative to the island’s land mass of just 122 square miles.

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What makes the perfect ski property?

David Giraud Chairman MGM Constructeur
David Giraud, Chairman MGM Constructeur

We ask David Giraud Chairman MGM Constructeur to give us the heads up when it comes to the perfect ski property.

There’s an inordinate amount of competition amongst developers in the Alps – how do your developments stand out from the crowd?
MGM is renowned for high quality and exceptional locations within resorts, villages and towns in the French Alps. You only need to visit some of our developments to see the local quality materials used such as wood, stone, granite that really make our properties stand out. Then there are the locations, we take a lot of care to build in great locations close to the skiing and activities that these areas have to offer.

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Alpine Lodge – the best place to invest in Ski Property

Famed as the European spiritual home of snowboarding, its ultra fast speed-skiing paths, and Eurostar link to London, Paradiski makes a mockery of its Alpine counterparts – but the real joy of Paradiski is that the paparazzi don’t get in the way of the fun.

Located in the Tarentaise Valley high in the French Alps, Paradiski is one of the largest snow-sure ski areas in the world. Between the resorts of Les Arcs, Peisey-Vallandry and La Plagne there is uninterrupted skiing on 425 km of runs served by an impressive network of lifts, including the famous Vanoise Express cable car that links Les Arcs and La Plagne. The bubble lift only takes 4 minutes to cover the 2km separating the two resorts.

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Fulfilling a Vision in Good Taste

When George Fenech, Chairman & Managing Director of The Tumas Group, 12 years ago, first came out with the idea of developing Portomaso, many people thought he was being unrealistic to even consider the idea, and that the company was being too ambitious.

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Property investment – The L-Word is Back…

During the boom years, you couldn’t move for estate agents, property developers, and TV presenters chanting the property mantra: Location, Location, Location. Now that the market has turned pear-shaped, their chiming clichés are conspicuous by their absence. Except for this timely piece…

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