Submitted by WA Contents

MASA architects converts abandoned 1940s sports building into new villa with naked brick walls

Netherlands Architecture News - Sep 06, 2021 - 13:02   1492 views

MASA architects converts abandoned 1940s sports building into new villa with naked brick walls

Rotterdam-based architecture studio MASA architects has converted an abandoned 1940s sports building into a new villa with naked brick walls and columns in Rotterdam, the Netherlands.

The project, named Villa West, combines the elegant beauty of existing structure with modern touches by using the old structure's high ceiling and flexible layout. The original building is an abandoned former war period sports building built in the 1940s and was never intended to be renovated. 

MASA architects converts abandoned 1940s sports building into new villa with naked brick walls

As the studio explains, real estate developers thought of demolishing it as no one would imagine making anything useful out of it. However, the client approached the site from a positive perspective and decided to transform the 'useless' building into a private villa.

MASA architects converts abandoned 1940s sports building into new villa with naked brick walls

Covering a total of 708-square-meters, the new villa consists of a livable environment presenting a special challenge and made this project a unique experience. 

The architects benefited from old building's existing structure and harmonized it with modern furnitures and new spatial arrangement. Breathing spaces are merged with swimming pool and lush greenery that fuses in the spaces. 

MASA architects converts abandoned 1940s sports building into new villa with naked brick walls

The studio started the construction work by dismantling the original structure. "An inspirational moment came when walls and ceiling were stripped bare and the raw beauty of the original materials was revealed, which in combination with the vast space filled with light presented a great point of departure," said MASA architects.

The architects preserved large spans of the sports hall to reuse in the villa to visually increase the volume and redefine the interior spaces. 

MASA architects converts abandoned 1940s sports building into new villa with naked brick walls

They subdivided these spans into separate rooms while preserving the 'grandeur' of the original space, which was a tricky balance according to the architects. 

MASA architects converts abandoned 1940s sports building into new villa with naked brick walls

The furnitures were custom-made for this house instead of standard partition walls to do the trick and were used like partition walls. These furniture units do not touch the ceiling. 

MASA architects converts abandoned 1940s sports building into new villa with naked brick walls

"Instead, glass or mirror surfaces are placed on top of them to create visual continuity by letting the original ceiling 'cut through the entire space, while sufficiently isolating the rooms," the studio added. 

"Thus, a cozy environment of the human scale was created, leaving the visual continuity of the original space uninterrupted."

MASA architects converts abandoned 1940s sports building into new villa with naked brick walls

The single-storey house consists of office, laundry, guest room, bedroom, master bedroom, kitchen and dining room, gym, swimming pool, terrace and a wood deck. 

Furniture units were made of natural materials and each material was applied only once to create a variety of interconnected spaces, each having a unique atmosphere. 

MASA architects converts abandoned 1940s sports building into new villa with naked brick walls

While the boundary between the interior space and the garden is intentionally blurred following the principle of visual continuity, the windows, which were initially not reaching the floor level, were cut through to the ground level to make large openings along the façade.

MASA architects converts abandoned 1940s sports building into new villa with naked brick walls


"Reflected in the polished semi-gloss concrete floor, large windows create a feeling of lightness and openness, in a way making nature 'step in' and enrich the interior space," the firm added.

MASA architects converts abandoned 1940s sports building into new villa with naked brick walls

The deck surface of the outdoor garden continues to the floor level of the interior. The 4-5m height row of bamboo creates a buffer space separating the villa from the surrounding apartment buildings. An elegant indoor space is placed at the end of the house. 

MASA architects converts abandoned 1940s sports building into new villa with naked brick walls

A great view opens from the swimming pool 'box' framed by a black contour of the glass wall, to the 'heart' of the house: the kitchen and living room, placed along the same axis.

MASA architects converts abandoned 1940s sports building into new villa with naked brick walls

MASA architects converts abandoned 1940s sports building into new villa with naked brick walls

MASA architects converts abandoned 1940s sports building into new villa with naked brick walls

MASA architects converts abandoned 1940s sports building into new villa with naked brick walls

MASA architects converts abandoned 1940s sports building into new villa with naked brick walls

MASA architects converts abandoned 1940s sports building into new villa with naked brick walls

MASA architects converts abandoned 1940s sports building into new villa with naked brick walls

MASA architects converts abandoned 1940s sports building into new villa with naked brick walls

MASA architects converts abandoned 1940s sports building into new villa with naked brick walls

MASA architects converts abandoned 1940s sports building into new villa with naked brick walls

MASA architects converts abandoned 1940s sports building into new villa with naked brick walls

MASA architects converts abandoned 1940s sports building into new villa with naked brick walls

MASA architects converts abandoned 1940s sports building into new villa with naked brick walls

MASA architects converts abandoned 1940s sports building into new villa with naked brick walls

Site plan

MASA architects converts abandoned 1940s sports building into new villa with naked brick walls

Ground floor plan

MASA architects converts abandoned 1940s sports building into new villa with naked brick walls

First floor plan

MASA architects converts abandoned 1940s sports building into new villa with naked brick walls

Roof floor plan

MASA architects converts abandoned 1940s sports building into new villa with naked brick walls

Cross sections

MASA architects converts abandoned 1940s sports building into new villa with naked brick walls

Elevations

MASA was founded in 2015 by Japanese architect Hiroki MAtsuura and Dutch architect René SAngers and emerged as a studio that naturally blends Japanese sensitivity and Dutch pragmatism. 

The office design various types of projects starting from housing, office, culture, commercial to education, sports and interiors. 

Project facts

Project name: Villa West

Architects: MASA architects

Location: Rotterdam, the Netherlands

Size: 708m2 

Date: 2020

Partner in charge: Hiroki Matsuura, René Sangers

Team: Edoardo Mancini, Hernando Arrázola, Natalia Kniazkova

Landscape design: MADMA urbanism+landscape

All images © Tim Van de Velde

All drawings © MASA architects

> via MASA architects