Tradition and Novelty under one Roof.

Our young client’s parents built a homestead in a meadow on a sunny slope at an altitude of 1400 meters above sea level, boasting a view of the Dolomites. The three- story house was erected in the 1990s in the typical rural style of the area, topped by a hip roof. On the first floor of this rural homestead there is an apartment that had been vacant. And so, our client, decided to act on his desire to renovate, and expand this floor into the already existing attic.

Project Name: For Luc – Loft For A Young Machine Builder
Studio Name: Messner Architects

Structural engineering Ing. Rodolfo Senoner


Ploner Paul GmbH – construction work Elektro Messner – electrical installations Markus Pechlaner – HVAC and plumbing Nardin Srl – glazings
Gampenrieder GmbH – furniture and doors möbelkreativ – kitchen
Gross Ofenbau – furnace
Hannes Fäckl – carpentry, paneling and gable facade Lobis Böden GmbH – parquets and tile work

Photography Karina Castro

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©Karina Castro

The apartment is entered on the outside from an exterior stairway on the north side of the house. The interior stairway that had originally connected the ground floor and the first floor was cut off.

The entrance area of the new flat, flanked by a room on each side, leads into the living room facing South through a previously existing balcony, allowing a unique panoramic mountain view, thanks to a ceiling-to-floor, wall-to-wall glazing.

This generous glass wall, in a way replacing a part of the original balcony, forms an inward-leaning arc, adding to the uniqueness of the space. A bathroom as well as a storage room can also be accessed from the entrance area.

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©Karina Castro

Now, in order to make the attic accessible, a new interior staircase had to be put in place and hence, the ceiling above the living area had to be nearly entirely demolished. A part of this ceiling found new form as a visible reinforced concrete ceiling.

Creating a sculptural feeling, this ceiling leaves a pocket for lighting above the kitchen, to then progressively dissolve across the cantilevered staircase, thus opening the space upwards to the attic. This creates a sense of openness.

Along the back-facing exposed concrete wall, the floating cantilevered staircase leads above a large, low- standing piece of furniture that houses an inbuilt wood furnace into the loft.

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©Karina Castro

A green carpet on the wall along the stairs, adds a sense of lightness while climbing the stairs into the attic space. Once arrived at the top, one cannot help but be drawn to a bright and generous view of the colorful meadows below the house, opened up by a glazing along the side of the room. Floating above the rest of the living quarters, this space feels like a peaceful and quiet retreat. The wooden shell below the roofing envelops all the attic spaces, thus too a bathroom, and a bedroom to the north side with plenty of day light thanks to the long-stretched glazing in the gable. The rooms in the loft have a lot of storage space along the low-rising eaves sides and are granted even more daylight through roof windows.

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©Karina Castro

A few reduced alterations to the traditional shell allowed the creation of an Atmosphere and rooms congruent with our client’s vision. Thus, the deviations from tradition at the interior of these upper floors are hardly visible from the outside, promising an even more surprising break from expectations.



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