Best of est | Alpine Living

    • Delving into the archive to explore the essence of alpine living, this ‘best of est edition’ unearths modern, mountainside homes that encapsulate a perfect weekend getaway.

      For high altitude dwellings designed to celebrate their natural surroundings, it should come as no surprise that timber features prominently alongside stone and steel as foundational materials for a mountainside home. Also looming large on the design ‘must-have’ list are oversized windows which showcase the landscape as a backdrop to the timber-lined interior.

      Mountain House by Studio Razavi

      In analysing the local historical buildings and the way in which they have shaped the architectural culture in the small village of Manigod in eastern France, Studio Razavi’s Mountain House successfully integrates both past design practices and modern style through alpine living references.

      Stacking the floors above the building’s cast concrete base ensures that each level of this home projects out a little further than the floor beneath it. This technique also removes the need for a large, overhanging roof as the exterior shell acts a protective casing from the harsh elements.

      Photographer | Olivier Martin Gambier

      Photographer | Olivier Martin Gambier

      Photographer | Olivier Martin Gambier

      Photographer | Simone Bossi

      Grand Pic Chalet by Appareil Architecture

      Inspired by traditional shapes and the natural surrounding landscape, Montreal-based design firm Appareil Architecture have injected a characteristic European touch to the design of this modern mountainside home. Honing a sense of simplicity and sensitivity to the Swiss chalet style design, Appareil has successfully united both the architecture of the home and its natural woodland surroundings.

      Black informs every aspect of the chalet from the outside in. From the timber-clad exterior among the cedar-lined forest with black-framed glass windows which create an internal picture frame for the surrounding treescape. Cement flooring, plywood walls and black metal accents throughout the home ensures a sense of bold and grounding solidity.

      North Vancouver House by Scott & Scott Architects

      Stripping back living spaces to their structural shell, Scott & Scott Architects have created a light-filled, pared-back alpine cabin for weekend escapes from the city. Hand-finished cement floors and lye wash treated Douglas Fir beams sealed with a soap finish, add a subtle tactility to the vast open-plan interiors.

      Embodying the very essence of simple alpine living and equipped with nothing but the essentials for unplugging from the world and tuning into nature, this mountainside home offers a welcome respite from the frantic pace of inner city living.


      MG2 House by Alain Carle Architecte

      Based on the outskirts of Quebec, Alain Carle has designed a timber-clad series of pavilions that comprise this alpine home. Drawing on the surrounding topography of one of the world’s oldest mountain ranges, Carle has used recycled materials to add an industrial aesthetic to the overarching design scheme, while a colour palette of darkened steel and sludgy shades of grey casts a monastic and moody atmosphere throughout.

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