House Ferraz Floor Sketch

house ferraz

constantia, cape town

The design of House Ferraz was an exercise in restraint, an elegant and apparently simple building that defies its large size and feels human in scale, even when occupied by a single person. The resulting architecture was intended to grow from the gentle landscape and be in total harmony with the environment. The building is a series of 15 individual pavilions situated on an extraordinary gently sloping three-acre plot adjacent to the historic Groot Constantia and vineyards. Like a necklace of beads, each pavilion represents a unit and these units are organised along a strong central spine that takes the form of a timber boardwalk. The boardwalk of House Ferraz starts at the free-standing garden pavilion to the south, which gains direct access to the Groot Constantia vineyards, and extends through the house proper culminating at the pool pavilion and tennis court to the north of the property. Each pavilion is one room wide with different widths, and by maintaining the same roof pitch, so do the heights vary according to the hierarchy of each pavilion. This broke up the large scale of the programme making the building, as a whole, appear more modest and village-like in scale. Public rooms are treated in a light and transparent manner, both visually and in the choice of materials. In so doing the landscape becomes dominant and ever-present. In contrast, the bedroom pavilions are more solid in feel with the use of thick brick walls, making these spaces more private and intimate. The house is not visible from the street and access is limited to a long tree-lined driveway. This makes for an interesting approach as the building itself, due to its orientation, is slowly discovered yet never completely revealed.

site: 14617 sq.m.
building: 1014 sq.m.
project architect: paolo deliperi
structural engineer: gadomski engineers
contractor: the building company
landscaping: cheryl walker
interior designer: hot cocoa interiors
photography: paolo deliperi