7 Projects Mastering the Recessed Window

Collaborating with masterful manufacturers to achieve their goals, here are seven projects with recessed windows that thrive within a tricky practice.

Jennifer Geleff Jennifer Geleff

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With more corners and bends than typical windows, recessed windows are a challenging architectural element as they are notoriously prone to leakage. Since water sits and accumulates on the sill that meets the bottom edge of the window, it is absolutely essential that recessed windows are properly detailed and installed. With that in mind, some of the following projects, such as Rodeph Sholom Lower School and MFG, harness an apt design solution that causes water to naturally run off. With window sills that slope downwards and outwards rather than resting perpendicular to the pane, the architects have tackled a pragmatic issue at the core of their designs.

Collaborating with masterful manufacturers to achieve their goals, here are seven projects with recessed windows that thrive within a tricky practice.

MM HOUSE by OHLAB / oliver hernaiz architecture lab, Palma, Spain

Windows by Carpinteria Palmer

Built on a low construction budget, OHLAB set out to create an energy efficient home that adapts to solar orientation, slope and terrain. Organized in four boxes, each box uses window openings large and small to optimize views and cross ventilation throughout the home. Rigorous thermal study was conducted to ensure optimal insulation for the home, including using the best materials and installation methods possible, for the many windows and doors.

SIRI House by IDIN Architects, Bangkok, Thailand

SIRI House is a renovated commercial building, which will function as a multi-generational family home and a space for the client’s jewelry business. The design creates an identifiable floor for each family unit, comprising a rest area, pantry, bedroom and living space. The double-height recessed windows were integrated in order to express this internal spatial organization as well as to create a continuously unified exterior façade.

Rodeph Sholom Lower School by Murphy Burnham & Buttrick Architects, New York, N.Y., United States

Windows by Skyline Windows, Technical Glass Products and U.S. Bullet Proofing

The design goal at Rodeph Sholom Lower School was to create a welcoming face that would provide neighbors with a lens into the life of the building. The façade features limestone cladding, a sheltered entryway and horizontally elongated recessed windows, which all work to strengthen the building’s connection with the street. For this project, the architects worked with Skyline Windows — a New York-based specialist in high quality aluminum windows — as well Technical Glass Product and U.S. Bullet Proofing, which specialize in fire-rated and bullet-proof glass.

Garden Mausoleum at Lakewood Cemetery by HGA Architects and Engineers, Minneapolis, Minn., United States

Glazing by Barber Glass

Designed by HGA Architects and Engineers, this 24,000-square-foot, two-story mausoleum includes six crypt rooms, six columbaria rooms, three family crypt rooms, a committal room and support spaces. Embracing the serenity of the surrounding pastoral landscape, the impeccably detailed building is clad in rough-textured gray granite and white mosaic-marble, which articulate and draw attention to the square and rectangular recessed windows.

Edges Al Barouk by Studio Toggle Architects, Salmiya, Kuwait

Edges Al Barouk features a traditional brick façade with a contemporary rhythmic twist. Set in Kuwait, which experiences unforgiving summer heat and the occasional sand storm, the fired-brick cladding acts as thermal protection that may withstand the harsh desert climate. The windows are recessed to block out direct sun and aluminum louvers are used to reduce heat gain and glare.

MFG by EVEQUOZ FERREIRA, Grimisuat, Switzerland

Windows by Finstral

MFG, a mass that resembles a large rock, experiments with the tricky topography and slope on which it rests. The main façade features extensive glazing that is flush with the façade as well as recessed windows that look like craters dug out of the imposing structure. The architects partnered with expert manufacturer Finstral, which specializes in bespoke, made-to-measure aluminum and wood windows.

E-BIB / A gilded library by plusofficearchitects, Woluwe-Saint-Pierre, Belgium

Windows by Schüco

This sustainable library by plusofficearchitects is an exceptional oasis that acts as a linkage between the suburban neighborhood residents and the school campus. The architects sought to create a functional interior with generous spaces and a clear identifiable façade. The library is clad in metal panels, which deliberately reflect the surroundings and radiate a golden glow. The entire façade is punctuated with square recessed windows that take on a subtle gradient of sizes.

The idea for this collection was developed by Eric Baldwin


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