Poot Architectuur Sint Benedictus House Belgium Photo Stijn Bollaert Yellowtrace 16

Poot Architectuur Sint Benedictus House Belgium Photo Stijn Bollaert Yellowtrace 13

Poot Architectuur Sint Benedictus House Belgium Photo Stijn Bollaert Yellowtrace 14

Poot Architectuur Sint Benedictus House Belgium Photo Stijn Bollaert Yellowtrace 02

 

Embracing a push-pull force along its facades, this long and narrow townhouse in Morstel, Belgium, seems to be almost squashed by its two neighbours and bulging at the seams.

There’s something quite Gaudi-esque about the floorplan of Sint Benedictus House. Contained within a simple rectangular form, the footprint has been inset with an oval-cut diamond. With this oval form at its centre, the external facade walls seem to almost rebound off this feature, taking with it the otherwise rectangular rooms and, instead, giving us the soft organic form of the home.

 

Poot Architectuur Sint Benedictus House Belgium Photo Stijn Bollaert Yellowtrace 04

Poot Architectuur Sint Benedictus House Belgium Photo Stijn Bollaert Yellowtrace 08

Poot Architectuur Sint Benedictus House Belgium Photo Stijn Bollaert Yellowtrace 09

Poot Architectuur Sint Benedictus House Belgium Photo Stijn Bollaert Yellowtrace 10

Poot Architectuur Sint Benedictus House Belgium Photo Stijn Bollaert Yellowtrace 06

 

Poot Architectuur Sint Benedictus House Belgium Photo Stijn Bollaert Yellowtrace 05

 

Poot Architectuur Sint Benedictus House Belgium Photo Stijn Bollaert Yellowtrace 07

 

A sunken lounge, referencing the almost 70s era of the townhouses nearby occupies one of the many ‘bulges’ of the home. Swelling out towards the garden, the living area leaves behind straight walls, and embraces a more organic feeling of being held within a womb-like volume. Complete with an emerald green carpet, soft window furnishings and a circular skylight, there’s something quite calming about the way the dappled light funnels into this particular part of the home.

With the kitchen tucked around the central oval stair, it feels more like a part of the home that’s tucked behind a laneway from a street, rather than the typical heart-of-the-home gesture that most kitchens are typically associated with. Long and narrow, perhaps the thing that makes it even more unique is its double-heighted nature. Enabling two-storey street-facing windows, the kitchen is drenched with natural light. Above, typical rooms such as bedrooms, studies and bathrooms spiral off the central oval staircase, and spew onto balconies that overlook both the street and the backyard.

 

Poot Architectuur Sint Benedictus House Belgium Photo Stijn Bollaert Yellowtrace 12

Poot Architectuur Sint Benedictus House Belgium Photo Stijn Bollaert Yellowtrace 17

Poot Architectuur Sint Benedictus House Belgium Photo Stijn Bollaert Yellowtrace 15

Poot Architectuur Sint Benedictus House Belgium Photo Stijn Bollaert Yellowtrace 19

 

 

Constructed largely out of harsh and cold materials, the concrete and the brickwork unexpectedly carry a sense of softness and grace about them. Perhaps it’s their gentle curvature, or maybe it’s the skin-like pinkiness of the bricks.

Paired with soft eucalyptus-toned paints, green marble and deep reds throughout the interior, Sint Benedictus House carries a gentle balance between materiality, form and a graceful push-pull force within a family home.

 

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