holzhausen zweifel nestles contemporary swiss 'maison broccard' along alpine slope

holzhausen zweifel nestles contemporary swiss 'maison broccard' along alpine slope

in the design of its maison broccard, holzhausen zweifel architekten navigates a dramatic sloping site overlooking the ancient fortified city of salins, switzerland and the distant mountains beyond. with minimal ornamentation, the cliff-side dwelling derives its opulence from the richness of its interiors, and the celebration of materials and detailing. located along such a dramatic landscape condition, the project is characterized as a thoughtful curation of spaces, expressing ‘look-throughs, look-outs, openness and density,’ the design team comments: ‘brighter and darker spaces interact and explicitly generate a timeless, sensual atmosphere far from any fashionable materialistic preferences.’

holzhausen zweifel maison broccard
images by michael blaser



developong the maison broccard, holzhausen zweifel architekten naturally recalls the structures and spatial orders of traditional valais farm-houses. these regional dwellings are defined by an open workspace-hall in the basement, a gathering space for cooking, eating and living on the main level, an intimate collection of smaller sleeping compartments to the upper level. with a differentiation of floor-levels and with the distinctive folding moment along the southern facade, the building directly reacts towards the steep, north-facing slope of its plot.

holzhausen zweifel maison broccard



holzhausen zweifel architekten’s maison broccard, with its massive base and its wooden top, offers a contemporary interpretation to buildings of the traditional alpine vernacular. with a restricted budget, the design team dismisses all elements of decorative craft, while decisively working with standardized construction products. exterior plasterwork, zinc sheeting, and raw plywood-boards. with these strategies, the reference to the vernacular occurs at a more subtle level with such elements as a gabled cement-stone roof, wooden windows, and larch-wood surfaces. the team explicitly maintains a contemporary appearance while rooting the project within its context.

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project info:


project title: maison broccard

architecture: holzhausen zweifel architekten

location: salins (valais), switzerland

photography: michael blaser

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