Project: Jaffa Apartment renovation
Architecture: Pitsou Kedem Architects
Location: Jaffa, Israel
Total site area: 280 sqm
Total floor area: 210 sqm
Program: single family home
Photo Credits: Amit Giron
Text by Pitsou Kedem Architects
Adjacent to the side of the hill rock on the edge of ancient Jaffa Port, this apartment is a collection of 300-year-old spaces built around a central patio.
The basis of the concept – searching for a stitch between Ottoman architecture and the contemporary architecture of the studio, and the connection between ancient building traditions and innovative technologies – such as glazed arches without divisions in axial opening and roofs containing modern infrastructure.
In the design of the Jaffa apartment, an engineering effort was invested to connect the spaces in scope to create a flow between them. The original stone used to build the vaults was exposed and treated, and the arched doorways that were opened were filled with glass doors in blackened bronze frames, revolving around a central or lateral pivot. The levels have been redesigned to accommodate the desired uses and a smoothed concrete floor unites the interior and patio.
The main design gesture is expressed in a dynamic metal cladding, which “travels” along the stone walls and accompanies them, containing behind them electrical pipes, air conditioning systems, stone niche storage and more. Occasionally, the wall cladding meets a joinery element and is functionally accompanied by it as a door, bed back or railing.
The interior partitions were designed in carpentry and detached from the stone vaults to create subspaces in the arched open space.
Access to the Jaffa apartment is via stairs leading to the patio that takes advantage of the Mediterranean climate. The stairs are accompanied by a bronze railing adapted to the harsh weather conditions near the sea. From the patio that forms the center of the house, the various spaces are split. The main space includes a living room facing the sea terrace, master bedroom, kitchen and dining area. The patio has access to two more bedrooms and bathrooms.
The material palate is minimal and includes concrete, stone, light wood, aluminum inside and bronze outside, and a combination of bronze shades to reflect the unique environment.