House Bresternica

Brestrnica is located 5 km west from the city of Maribor. It lies on a terrace between the river Drava and the steep slopes of Kozjak along the Maribor – Dravograd road. The stretched out settlement has an old city center located between the streams Kamnica and Brestrnica.

There is a hydropower plant Mariborski otok by the river Drava, and above it a dammed lake – The Bresternica Lake.

A stone’s throw away from the capital of Štajerska, where, due to the damming of the river, the river Drava extends its river bed into the so called Lake of Maribor, the family had a building plot available in a settlement with a series of single family buildings from various eras. The indisputable quality of the plot is displayed by a sunny location on an elevated hillside, from which you can see the Drava River, the foothills of Pohorje and even further towards Koroška. The steep shore of the plot, the height difference from the far north to the far south point of it is 9 meters, demanded a thorough reflection on the construction.

We decided on a terrace construction, which was a perfect answer to the steep plot, and divided it into three planes. The first plane is on the street level, where the driveway and the access to the lot are located. The second plane consists of the ground level of the house, a functional garden with a pool and a grassy surface which functions like a foyer for the living areas on the ground level. The third plane encompasses the second floor of the house, meant for intimacy, which ties into the outside area on the northern side.

All living areas of the house face to the south, and even though the house is embedded into the terrain, it does not seem entrenched, but light, because the ground level is designed as a transparent pedestal through which the landscape flows naturally.

The ground level is glazed from three directions, only the north facade acts like a support wall. There are two steel support beams in the southern part of the interior, one in between the living room and the office and the other in the dining room.

Because of the glazing, the ground level looks like a weightless pedestal to the floor above it on the outside, and like a glass pavilion on the inside. The ground level is where most of the living quarters are located, arranged in a circular pattern (kitchen, dining room, living room, wardrobe, and the interior stairway to the floor above). There is also a small office with a sliding door located beside the west facade. The outside space acts like an extension to the inner quarters. We wanted to divide the second plane into many functional ambiences. The southern terrace is an extension to the living area, which is intertwined with the water motif of the pool, and is followed by a functional terrace on the eastern side. The look of the garden interflows with the wider landscape which acts like a natural frame to the garden.

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