Immersed in nature, the 911-square-foot House in Mita by Takatsuki–based Horibe Associates looks out to a lush, wooded area and fields of rice, blocking it from the road and offering a sense of serenity and privacy. Its U shape and garden-facing rooms embody indoor/outdoor living, giving the owners a stunning backdrop a living experience that changes with the seasons.
In spring, the reflection of the variety of trees appear in the water-filled rice fields; in summer, a cool breeze blows over rice plants, flowing into the living areas; and in fall, the rural landscape turns to gold in a gilded view that can be taken in from the living, dining, and kitchen areas.
In juxtaposition to its natural setting and warm interiors, the exterior and roof are composed of corrugated-metal panels in alabaster hues. Within the U is an atrium with a single tree; the rooms wrapping around it each have individual access outside.
Inside, the use of concrete is balanced by warm wood elements and textured, eggshell walls. A sweeping floor-to-ceiling glass sliding door opens up to the outdoors, flooding the space with natural light.
In the cross-section plan, the main living areas (including the kitchen, dining, and living room) are set lower than the rest of the house for added privacy—they are roughly 18 inches lower so those working in the fields are unable to see occupants inside.
The other rooms are all arranged to face the courtyard, creating a social, communal environment amongst family members in this tranquil home.
Architect: Horibe and Associates
Construction: Soken Corporation
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