Dwelling at Maytree by ODOS Architects

Designed in 2008 by ODOS Architects, this modern two-storey residence is located in Wicklow, Ireland.

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Description by Odos Architects

This house is in essence a simple bold sculptural form which sits at the foot of a steep escarpment in the Wicklow hills. It is a two storey house with vehicular and pedestrian access from the Bray Road. Accommodation is comprised of a two car garage, boiler room, wc and utility at ground floor level and open plan living, kitchen, dining areas with 3 bedrooms (master ensuite), study and family bathroom at first floor level.

This house replaces a derelict 1940’s single storey cottage (with associated out houses) which previously existed on the site. The building is entered on foot at first floor level via a long stepped processional route to the front of the building. The façade to this stepped approach has been purposely left blank to focus the entrant to the point of entry whilst also weighting the propped cantilever appropriately. At entry level a hallway guides you to the open plan living kitchen and dining areas. These areas are contained within a propped cantilevered volume, which hovers above the landscape below.

A forest of red columns has been inserted below the cantilever, which conceptually grow out of the hillside. These columns ‘guard’ a pedestrian route, which leads you under the cantilever to the rear garden and living room deck at first floor level. Along this route one truly experiences the sheerness of the escarpment above. Internally the hallway at main entry level has been conceived as an “internal street” the dimensions of which widen to the more public aspects of the plan and diminish along the points of entry to private bedrooms and bathrooms.

A study at main entry level offers a taste of the internal experience prior to entry. The roofscape is peppered with rooflights in an attempt to engage the user with the steep escarpment to the rear of the house. This affords the occupant vertical views of sky and foliage from the most private spaces within the house.

Photography by Ros Kavanagh and ODOS architects

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- by Matt Watts