A Beautiful House

Competition entry for a new house in the Home Counties, England, working with FFLO

Design A Beautiful House’ was an international design competition seeking design proposals for a new home located on a 91Ha site within London’s metropolitan green belt. The brief asked for design responses to demonstrate a concept of beauty while providing a home that responded to the programmatic brief for the required accommodation.

Our submission took as its starting point the notion that a beautiful house must please all of the senses, but also the intellect. It must inspire intrigue and fantasy, and speak of itself as a world within the world.

Landscape sketch by James Fox of FFLO
View of house across the lake from the driveway, with the bridge in the foreground and walled garden beyond

The external expression, and internal spaces of our project are organized within an over-arching order, a classical order, which represents a universal approach to the containment of space and an architectural expression which transcends a subjective notion of beauty. It represents the ideals and aspirations of a timeless architecture.

We have sought a certain monumentality in our design, which is a recognition of the fundamental importance of home, and which in its physical form may be both weighty and immaterial. In an intellectual sense, the project may be read as a direct descendent of homes ancient and modern, refined and awkward, noble and humble. In a physical sense, the building shimmers across the lake’s surface, and at certain points in the house the arrangement of windows will allow the walls to fall away in perception, giving a sensation of hovering over the lake and parkland.

Entrance court with garage entrance wing to left and lake in distance
Ground floor plan
View from the entrance balcony overlooking the double height hall and the lake beyond