Nestled amidst the picturesque hills of Salzburg City, "Above the Trees" is a residential project that embodies a blend of natural beauty and architectural elegance. The building's design, which differs significantly from surrounding urban structures, alludes to the transition between town and country through its materiality and its distinct character.
Key features of the building include is its slim profile, emphasized by its taper, and the visual relationships between the building and its surroundings have been a central factor in the development of its floor plan. The design aims to strike a balance between urban living and a connection to nature, creating a serene escape for its residents.
Surrounded by the breathtaking beauty of nature, the building site is approached through a tranquil, winding road. This hillside location offered a unique opportunity to create a structure that blends with its natural surroundings and allows the residents to fully immerse themselves in the dynamic topography. The building focuses on fostering a strong connection to the outdoors, with expansive vistas that capture the beauty of the distant views and invite the outside in.
The building is designed as a compact structure, with the exception of the spacious covered forecourt on the ground floor, which serves as the building's main entrance, and is marked by its dominant top floor, offering a spacious and valuable horizontal surface on the hillside. The building itself consists of three floors, offering ample space and versatility in its design. The building presents a sleek and subtle appearance when viewed from the side of Salzburg City, seamlessly integrating into its environment with elegance.
The ground floor greets guests with a range of welcoming spaces, including a translucent bathroom, all thoughtfully placed to take full advantage of the unique location. To heighten the sense of anticipation, the views of the distant mountains are intentionally obscured until reaching the second floor. This floor, which serves as the heart of the home, is a spacious and open living area that doubles as the roof for the ground floor forecourt.
The building's floor plan is ingeniously designed to allow residents to fully immerse themselves in the stunning mountain scenery. The tapering floor plan optimizes the views so that even while enjoying the privacy of the bathroom, one can take in panoramic vistas of the mountain landscape.
The connection between the interior and exterior of the building is emphasized through the use of floor-to-ceiling windows facing east, south, and west. These windows, placed in strategic positions, provide natural light and clear views, promoting a harmonious relationship between the interior and the surroundings. These window areas also enhances the building's overall appearance, creating a smooth transition between indoor and outdoor spaces.
The kitchen and living room have beautiful views of the Salzburg mountains and feature concrete and wood design elements, like a concrete kitchen block and open fireplace. The kitchen is positioned for optimal mountain views, and the canopy and terraces offer sun protection and a sense of security. The canopy has light holes for natural light and one leads to a roof-top sauna for relaxation and mountain sunset views.
The concept of the "Above the Trees" project was to create a living space that reflects the feeling of being perched above the treetops. To achieve this, the architects approached the structural design with authenticity, utilizing reinforced concrete for components in contact with the ground and for the core strengthening. The remaining walls, ceilings, and upper floor were constructed from wood, while steel girders and supports were added to provide additional support as required. These structural elements are not concealed, but rather proudly displayed in their raw beauty, enhancing the overall appearance of the project.