Residential ArchitectureHousesClifton House in Cape Town with a Panoramic View of the Ocean

Clifton House in Cape Town with a Panoramic View of the Ocean

Clifton House in Cape Town with a Panoramic View of the Ocean

Architect: Malan Vorster Architecture Interior Design
Project: Clifton House
Architects in charge: Pieter Malan, Jan-Heyn Vorster
Location: Clifton, Cape Town, South Africa
Area: 789 sqm
Photography: Adam Letch

The suburb of Clifton on Cape Town’s Atlantic Seaboard has a high rate of foot traffic due to it’s scenic beauty, with residents and tourists being keen joggers and walkers. It was a deliberate design intention to take this fact into consideration – in a neighborhood characterized by high blank boundary walls and overpowering building mass.

Clifton House in Cape Town with a Panoramic View of the Ocean 1

The Clifton house is visually accessible from the street, rather than hiding behind perimeter walls and gates – and it aims to contribute to the streetscape (specific attention has been paid to landscaping design at sidewalk level), in relation to the sidewalks and to the height of existing adjacent houses. It occupies a position on the hill side between lower lying houses to the left or north, and higher situated properties to the right or south of it.

Clifton House in Cape Town with a Panoramic View of the Ocean 2

Gabion walls are used to elevate the living spaces, de-emphasize a large garage and screen utilities. Elevation above road level is essential to maximize view potential, but can lead to overpowering building mass. The design therefor aims to erode the building mass by means of smaller volumes and expressing thinner structural elements such as floor slabs, thereby creating an organic stacking of building components. The garage’s gabion walls have been planted to become overgrown with time, and as such soften the streetscape for passers-by. The guest flat on first floor has full views over the road, to the sea beyond, and is given privacy by means of a cedar wood shuttered wall.

Clifton House in Cape Town with a Panoramic View of the Ocean 3

The lower two levels (garage and guest apartment) of the home engage more with the hillside, whereas the top two levels, housing the main residence, become boulder-like objects perched on the hillside. The main residence is broken into three off-shutter concrete building blocks (the ‘boulders’), connected by means of a free-flowing double volume atrium space, also containing vertical circulation (staircase and lift). Two ‘bookends’ of the residence is expressed as glazed and cedar shuttered boxes, housing bathrooms that become lit-from-within lanterns at night. These elements are further celebrated by being cantilevered over negative space below.

Clifton House in Cape Town with a Panoramic View of the Ocean 4

Seamless indoor-outdoor living spaces spill out onto a comfortable protected and landscaped courtyard, that allows maximum north exposure, rather than responding to sea views only. Similarly the kitchen has a direct connection to the vegetable and herb garden by means of stepping-stones over a pond with a wet wall water feature. The atrium opens up to the pond by means of a story-high mechanical sash window, greatly adding to natural cooling in the summer.

Clifton House in Cape Town with a Panoramic View of the Ocean 5

Roof over-hangs and glazing specifications were carefully considered in order to minimize unwanted solar heat gain. Western exposure is regulated with external, automated drop-down screens over glazed façades, whilst energy consumption is minimized by means of Photovoltaic and Solar panels both linked to a centralized system for domestic water heating, waterborne under-floor and pool heating.

Clifton House in Cape Town with a Panoramic View of the Ocean 6

The selection of materials; board-marked concrete, local stone, untreated cedar wood, rough-sawn oak floor planks, terrazzo floors and Corten steel will express the passing of time, with the gradual changing of each material’s natural colour and texture.

Clifton House in Cape Town with a Panoramic View of the Ocean 7

Clifton House in Cape Town with a Panoramic View of the Ocean 8

Clifton House in Cape Town with a Panoramic View of the Ocean 9

Clifton House in Cape Town with a Panoramic View of the Ocean 10

Clifton House in Cape Town with a Panoramic View of the Ocean 11

Clifton House in Cape Town with a Panoramic View of the Ocean 12

Clifton House in Cape Town with a Panoramic View of the Ocean 13

Clifton House in Cape Town with a Panoramic View of the Ocean 14

Clifton House in Cape Town with a Panoramic View of the Ocean 15

Clifton House in Cape Town with a Panoramic View of the Ocean 16

Clifton House in Cape Town with a Panoramic View of the Ocean 17

Clifton House in Cape Town with a Panoramic View of the Ocean 18

Subscribe to our newsletter

New SuViche Doral Restaurant Designed by Saladino Design Studios

The new 3,825 square-foot SuViche restaurant in Miami’s popular CityPlace Doral, is the brand’s unveiling of its new concept designed by Saladino Design Studios.

Jersey City Residence by Fogarty Finger Architecture

Fogarty Finger Architecture crafts a striking residence within a landmarked industrial building. Taking tremendous care to preserve the original structure, which dates to the turn of the 20th century, the designers appended new spaces around the existing envelope.

Why You Should Get Your Carpets Cleaned Twice Annually

If you have only recently made the switch to carpets, you may be surprised to learn that doing so can improve air quality throughout your home

Environmentally Friendly House – Villa with Mosaic Facade

Project: Environmentally Friendly House Architects: GYZA Location: Vilnius County, Lithuania Area: 226.0 sqm Project Year: 2014 Photographs: Antanas Minkevičius, Žilvinas Vasiliauskas, Bonnevier Lithuanian architecture studio Gyza designed this villa on...

PM Studio Apartment by Atelier PECLAT+CHOW

Project: PM Studio Apartment Project leader and designer: Atelier PECLAT+CHOW Location: Itaim Bibi, São Paulo, Brazil Project size: 55 m2 Site size: 55 m2 Completion date 2021 Photo Credits: Luiza...

Recommended Stories