karim nader studio has released new photos showcasing the ongoing construction of on the rocks, a concrete and glass house sitting on the limestone bedrock of faqra, lebanon, at 1,700 meters above sea level. the site, characterized by an almost lunar landscape with scenic rock formations known under the popular name of ‘houses of ghosts’ is located between ski slopes and roman ruins on mount lebanon, about one-hour drive north-east of beirut. reminiscent of its surroundings and deeply influenced by them, the retreat residence is due for completion in late 2020.
construction images by marwan harmouche
models + drawings courtesy of karim nader studio
karim nader studio has set the residence amidst the limestone landscape of the small town of faqra in mount lebanon, which is characterized by its natural rock formations carved over the centuries by rain and snow. here, the lebanese architect has developed a project that expands the existing grey canvas of the natural surroundings into man-made fair-faced concrete volumes that accommodate the intimate functions of the house. titled on the rocks, the house is accessed by a stunning floating staircase that, cascading between the built volumes and meandering around the rocks, seems to be almost emerging from the limestone formations surrounding the house.
the thickness and the overall sense of compactness of concrete is counterbalanced by a careful use of glass in a dynamic relationship that characterizes all rooms of the house. a zinc roof hovers above those apparently dispersed boxes, creating a seeming enclosure. ‘but where roof happens, enclosure disappears, and where enclosure happens, roof disappears,’ says karim nader. ‘the intimacy of enclosure is here opposed to the openness of an extreme transparency as they do not happen at once in this atypical house.’
the house incorporates three bedrooms, fully clad in wood to offer a warm environment, where each one opens up to a small patio with a tree, a rock and a selected perspective to the outside. the living rooms sit under the bridging roof (18m in length) and are bounded by fully operable facades to the north and south, allowing its inhabitants to enjoy sheltered outdoors space in the warmer months.
name: on the rocks
architect: karim nader studio
location: faqra, lebanon
status: under construction (due for completion in late 2020)
project partner: roula assaf
team: karim nader with roula assaf, elie christian naameh, yasmina baladi, omar faress darwish, elias el hage
structural engineering: elie turk mep engineering: eak signature
construction: MAK builders rami kassem and walid sader
architecture in lebanon (51 articles)
residential architecture and interiors (1138 articles)
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