Glass and ceramic for looking at nature
The villa in this article is located in the French region of Brittany, in the city of Brest in the Finisterre area. The name is derived from the Latin Finis Terrae‘, the end of the land, and the Breton city on the Atlantic coast of North Western France was, in the past, the port of entry to the European continent from and to the entire world – a role it maintains today thanks to its modern port. This strategic position has made Brest not only a focus of world trade and industry, but has also given it a beautiful and wild natural setting: beaches of fine sand, cliffs plunging down to the sea, a dense network of rivers – including the Penfeld which runs right through the city – and ancient city centres and villages. And it is precisely the cultural and naturalistic heritage of the city that inspired the owners of this villa to come and live in Brittany and build their new home there.
Situated in the natural bay that extends south of the port and the city itself, the villa is a glass cube, compact and well rooted to the ground, which immediately declares its intention to resist the wet Atlantic winds and storms coming off the ocean. But it does so without closing itself off; indeed, the villa is open to the landscape on all four sides with its large windows. A house with a view which has no fear of even the most hostile conditions and elements. From this point of view, the villa demonstrates the influence of climate on architecture, creating a sort of continuity between the indoors and outdoors, adapting to the setting with panoramic views over the surrounding countryside.
The house has two storeys. The ground floor houses a large living room with a lunch area directly adjacent to the very informal white kitchen counter, which blends into the white-plastered walls. The corner opposite this lunch area is the conversation area, which exploits a corner to double the amount of glass looking over the landscape. The spaces are made airy by their height throughout the living area, with a double band of windows.
The bedrooms on the upper floor are located in separate volumes on the two opposing wings of the house, connected by a visually striking glass walkway as if they were the tree houses of childhood.
The white walls and the large windows are enhanced by marble effect porcelain floor tiles, with their special finish which reflects and amplifies the light. The designer chose the Marvel Grey Stone collection from Atlas Concorde, inspired by the tradition of Italian marble, here made even more sophisticated by the honed finish which accentuates the reflections and creates an infinite play of light to enhance the day area. And that’s not all. The floor tiles continue seamlessly along the wall leading from the entrance area, thus emphasising its importance as a point of entry into the whole.
The bathrooms, finally, genuine salles de bain‘ of impressive size, also use Atlas Concorde marble effect porcelain tiles, but in total white for both floors and walls.
Atlas Concorde, Marvel series
45x90 / 75x75 / 60x60 / 30x60
Water absorpion (ISO 10545-3): <=0.1%
Chemical resistance (ISO 10545-13): ULA
Resistance to deep abrasion (ISO 10545-6): <=150mm3
Stain resistance (ISO 10545-14): compliant
Frost resistance (ISO 10545-12): compliant
Modulus of rupture and breaking strength (ISO 10545-4): R >=40 N/mm2
Slip resistance (DIN 51130): R09
Thermal shock resistance (ISO 10545-9): compliant
Linear thermal expansion (ISO 10545-8): compliant