2lb house in geneva by raphael nussbaumer architectes 2lb house in geneva by raphael nussbaumer architectes
mar 31, 2014

2lb house in geneva by raphael nussbaumer architectes

2lb house in geneva by raphael nussbaumer architectes
all photos by lionel henriod /mc2
all images courtesy of raphael nussbaumer architectes






located at the edge of a rural village, in a suburb of geneva, the ‘2lb house’ by raphael nussbaumer architectes is designed for a family with a passion for brazilian architecture. the clients wanted to build there a house in a similar typological style. the sloping site faces south towards the salève mountain, which majestically overlooks the area. as is the case with most swiss regions today, the zone is under design protection, which represented quite a challenge for designing a contemporary residence. the almost obligatory position of the volume in the steepest part of the slope, limited the height of the building and the only possible access to the plot is from the south-west corner. this allow for the garden to be a central element of the project as it encloses the house softly in a protective atmosphere, and is an extension of the living room area to blur the boundary between inside and outside. the landscape and mountain range inspired the design of a solid, autonomous and mineral volume. all enclosing walls are constructed with exposed concrete and were built in one single manufacturing process in order to procure a monolithic aspect without any horizontal division.

the garden grows to the edge of the living room patio area


textures and color from the landscape juxtapose with the smooth concrete and glass façade


the lower lever features a more transparent and public volume while the second floor is more private and protected by the constructional prism


view of the entirety of the site with views to the salève mountain


the car garage follows the same typology as the dwelling


the living area separated by sliding glass doors





privacy in relation to the neighboring houses was achieved by angled roof-lights that stretch across, instead of placing windows all around the volume. thus, the first floor allows light to flow into the central artery of the house. the ‘2lb house’s organization is based on a matrix of 3 x 3 units with a hall and staircase in the center. the singular features of the abode consist of three distinct space structures: the ‘glasshouse’ for the most public areas which has access to the garden on the ground floor; the ‘cave’ for all service areas, and is excavated into the slope; and the ‘lived-in roof’ with its attic like roof lights that brighten the bedrooms and spaces on the second floor.

staircase detail


bathroom illuminated by tilted roof windows on the upper floor


ground floor plan


upper floor plan


section and elevation




project info:



location: geneva, switzerland
architect: raphaël nussbaumer architectes, www.rnussbaumer.ch
project team: raphaël nussbaumer, frédéric perone, anjéla aubert, luis antunes, reto oechslin, davide righenzi
structure: ingeni, carouge
living space: 320 m2
pascal heyraud architecte paysagiste, neuchâtel
colors: annette roserens, zurich
energy consulting: estia, ecublens
photographer: lionel henriod /mc2 




designboom has received this project from our ‘DIY submissions‘ feature, where we welcome our readers to submit their own work for publication. see more project submissions from our readers here. 

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