Inside an old restaurant erected using pieces of the Trophy of Augustus, architect Jeremy Biermann layers in more locally sourced materials to create a family retreat.
In spite of much of the world grinding to a halt during the pandemic, work didn’t slow down for Jeremy Biermann, founder of bear architectes. Transitioning away from his offices in the Principality of Monaco, he continued his practice out of his family’s weekend home a few miles away in La Turbie, a commune that overlooks the French Riviera. Like much of the village, the stone walls of Biermann’s home come from the ruins of a circa-6 B.C. Roman monument, the Trophy of Augustus, which was erected to commemorate the emperor’s conquest of local tribes.
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The old restaurant in which the home stands had already been reimagined as a residence, but Biermann took the design a few steps further. Inside the stone structure of the two-level, 970-square-foot dwelling, he implemented locally sourced materials like wood, glass, and resin. The hexagonal, terracotta floor tiles that run throughout, though originally from Burgundy, were sourced nearby.
Between the bedrooms and the kitchen and living areas, sliding glass doors create a vitrine-esque dining room that opens onto a courtyard, which used to be the restaurant’s farmyard. The dining table, a century-old relic preserved from the restaurant, recalls the original space. Though the building posed structural constraints, Biermann was able to achieve a renovation that deftly maintains its charm and authenticity. "It's sincere, in a rustic, chic style," says Biermann.
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