SAOTA’s First Completed Project in Russia: Silver Pine Villa

SAOTA’s First Completed Project in Russia

Project Name: Silver Pine Villa
Location: Moscow, Russia
Lead Designers: SAOTA
SAOTA Project Team: Greg Truen, Roxanne Kaye & Philippe Raffner
Interior Architecture: ARRCC
Interior Designer: Max Kasymov & ARRCC
Project Manager: Troy Advisory LLP.
Electrical Engineer: Alexander Boenich
Quantity Surveyor: Alexander Stroikov
Contractor: Alexander Stroikov
Landscaping: Klukva Landscaping
Lighting Design: Kseniya Rudkovskaya
Bespoke furniture: Max Kasymov & OKHA
Interior Styling: Natasha Onufreichuk
Photographer: Sergey Ananiev
Copy by Graham Wood

In the Russian Capital of Moscow, this contemporary home, set among the pine woods on an island in the Moskva River, introduces a revolutionary outward-looking approach to the city’s architectural tradition.

SAOTA’s First Completed Project in Russia

Designed by SAOTA, a South African architecture studio known for advancing the possibilities of 20th-century modernism, the Silver Pine Villa represents the tradition of the terrace, with its emphasis on an outdoor orientation, but in a context and climatic condition vastly different from the origin of the type.

SAOTA’s First Completed Project in Russia

Glazing systems have advanced to a point where they can effectively provide insulation in the Russian winter extremes, which solved the climate challenge. The real challenge was to mediate a dialogue between the two traditions to resolve the new approach harmoniously in the Russian context. The design addresses the urban architectural character of the capital city and the pocket of natural pine forest on the island, something of a rarity this close to the historic centre.

SAOTA villa, living room, Silver Pine Villa

The pinewoods that the site overlooks are thus a significant motivation for the design’s open, outward-facing orientation. This approach allowed SAOTA to explore a new kind of architecture that invites as much natural light as possible during the dark winter months to compensate for the lack of sun and mitigating its absence. It’s a design that makes comfortable spaces to appreciate the external conditions beauty, harsh as they may be.

SAOTA house, living room, Silver Pine Villa

The architectural premise is one of contrasts: the street frontage’s heavy protective presence speaks to the capital’s monolithic architectural character, built to resist the extremes of heat and cold, which can vary 70 degrees between seasons.

SAOTA’s First Completed Project in Russia

Thus, the public character of the Silver Pine Villa provides a contemporary interpretation of the city’s architectural character. Surrounding the main entrance is a sculptural buckle. This backlit bronze-clad feature façade not only acts as a visual prompt towards the entrance opening on the otherwise relatively featureless façade but also communicates the promise of the luxury and light interiors in the private spaces beyond the threshold. It heightens the experience of crossing from the public realm to the private domain with its predominant treed landscape.

SAOTA house, dining room

From the garden, the architecture presents a contrasting façade. Open fragmented glass walls invite views of the pines in, blurring the distinction between what’s inside or outside. The outdoor terraces and the faceted, angular façade create courtyards and external rooms that facilitate an interaction between landscape and architecture that is a departure from the local tradition. During the summer months, it is possible to live outside as you might in South Africa or California. In winter, the interiors, which are nevertheless warm and cosy, can celebrate the beauty of the snowy landscape and pines in an altogether new approach to the harsh conditions. Even in winter, the focus remains on the terrace rather than the hearth.

SAOTA’s First Completed Project in Russia, Silver Pine Villa

SAOTA used a silver-grey metal cladding on the exterior that complements and enhances the green of the plants and trees of the surrounding forest, providing an immersive landscape experience. The facade takes on the quality of natural material itself, highlighting a bespoke crafted quality in its detailing that speaks to the unique tailor-made approach to the house’s design and furnishing, especially in the interior design.

SAOTA villa, kitchen, Silver Pine Villa

The heavy, protective quality of the façade, particularly that of the street, gives way to a warm, lively interior in the way the outer shell of a geode might reveal a warm agate or shimmering crystal interior. It imparts an exquisite, jewel-like quality to the interiors, which have a somewhat whimsical, playful quality in contrast to the exterior.

SAOTA’s First Completed Project in Russia

Inside, natural materials predominate, from exotic marbles, some backlit, to metal and timber surfaces that bring softness and warmth. ARRCC maintains a dialogue with the architecture in their interior design details. The television’s metallic frame resonates with the ledge’s faceted jewel-like form below it and the external brass buckle at the building entrance.

SAOTA, dining area, Silver Pine Villa

A swirling sculptural staircase contrasts playfully with the angular architectural elements where they converge, resolving them in an organic flourish and signalling a subtle change of character between the more public sociable living space on the ground level and the bedrooms upstairs.

SAOTA’s First Completed Project in Russia

Softer, warmer materials predominate upstairs, where the more open, flowing, and interconnected spatial approach gives way to private spaces with a more relaxed, casual atmosphere.

SAOTA’s First Completed Project in Russia

This project between SAOTA, ARRCC and Max Kasymov is the first completed SAOTA project in Russia. ARRCC, an interior design studio, proposed the concept idea for the interiors, and Max Kasymov, Moscow interior design studio, developed the project further and oversaw its realisation. Supervising and coordinating the contractors and suppliers on the building were carried out by the Moscow studio as well as selecting materials, furniture and lighting.

SAOTA’s First Completed Project in Russia

By designing and manufacturing bespoke furniture in their own workshop, Max Kasymov studio was able to realise all the ideas and solutions proposed by SAOTA and ARRCC.

SAOTA, bedroom, Silver Pine Villa

OKHA also provided some of the villa’s furniture. The Nicci Swivel armchair, the Mesh side table, and the To Be One Lamp can be found in the living area. They are also responsible for the custom-made brass frame around the television. Elsewhere one finds OKHA’s Tofu dining chairs, Frame barstools and Solar mirror.

SAOTA’s First Completed Project in Russia

The Silver Pine villa’s overall experience suggests that SAOTA has mediated a new relationship between Russian domestic architecture and its landscape and climate. The modern villa’s life-enhancing potential, realised in more temperate climates, made possible in this more extreme setting.

SAOTA, bathroom, Silver Pine Villa

SAOTA’s First Completed Project in Russia, Silver Pine Villa

SAOTA’s First Completed Project in Russia, Silver Pine Villa

SAOTA’s First Completed Project in Russia

SAOTA’s First Completed Project in Russia

blank

Newsletter HomeWorldDesign

To be updated with all the latest projects

Most Recent

Most Popular

Morro Apartment / Hinterland Architecture Studio

Morro Apartment, Portugal / Hinterland Architecture Studio

The original house is divided into minimum spaces, articulated by the entrance hall and a small corridor. The aim of the project was to maximize the living space of the house, stripping the space to the bare minimum and reorganizing the plan.
The Historical Heart of Amsterdam Welcomes CitizenM Amstel in Nineteen-Twenties Former Bank Building

The Historical Heart of Amsterdam Welcomes CitizenM Amstel in Nineteen-Twenties Former Bank Building

concrete always seeks challenges in improving the concept. For citizenM Amstel, a slightly different room design was created to fit within the monumental building guidelines.
House on Grand River by Solares Architecture

House on Grand River by Solares Architecture

House on Grand River is a modern, multi-generational home, with a family-centred layout, striking blocks of colour, and gorgeous views.
Grandezza Housing Units in Malaysia by ONG&ONG Group

Grandezza Housing Units in Malaysia by ONG&ONG Group

Conceptualised as a resort-style urban haven in the serene township of Eco Sanctuary, Grandezza comprises a cluster of housing units characterised by contemporary design aesthetics and touches of luxury.

Lakeside House Rises Above the Trees For 180-Degree Views

This lakeside house is a private weekend residence, called Blue Lake Retreat, designed by Lake | Flato Architects in Marble Falls, Texas. Responding initially to...

More Articles Like This