For a house inside a generous loft, Dutch studio Marc Koehler Architects has created a series of independent volumes which allow for a contrast between intimate, closed spaces and open, shared passages in which natural light acts as a protagonist.
Located in the city's KNSM island, the house is part of an old harbour cantina which was transformed into a residential building some years ago. With totally glazed façades on both sides of the loft, the building has sweeping views over the water.
The building's vast space is divided in a settlement-like manner, emulating a group of small houses inside the main dwelling. Thus, small "streets" emerge as multifunctional living spaces for activities such as playing, partying, washing and working.
In contrast, a series of "house-like" volumes contain less mobile spaces, such as bedrooms, bathroom, and storage. Compressing spaces such as the bedroom, the architects achieve a series of open spaces that expand. The "streets" carry daylight right into the heart of the house, and allow for views outwards. According to the architects, the open spaces can be "colonized" in the future, constructing extra volumes, when the family expands.