Soto Apartments are located in Meadowbank, Auckland and aspires to be a sophisticated and elegant building that is conscious of its surrounds and is contextually appropriate.
The architecture of the project employs a very simple language and vocabulary to visually reduce its weight, height and appearance and create an elegant form that was most importantly sensitive to its environment and context.
The building is cut in half horizontally by creating a base or podium that the building sits on. This immediately has the effect of diminishing the appearance of the number of floors above ground. The lower levels, including the ground floor entry, are treated materially differently.
Wintergardens are then introduced on alternate floors - these reinforce the strong horizontality of the project and again reduce the number of elements once reads in the building. In place of six floors, one reads a podium and effectively two wintergardens ‰ÛÒ the clear horizontality creates an illusion of a lower building. Again accentuating this are the extremely sharp and crisp external horizontal lines introduced in the detailing of the wintergardens.
The project has a very clear and legible materiality strategy to create a sophisticated, elegant and contextually appropriate response.
The base of the apartment building, from level one downward is treated in a heavy limestone which helps to anchor the project and the use of stone speaks of the ground. In contrast to the base, the building above is clad in visually lighter materials. This includes dark bronzed powder coated aluminium soffits, slab edges and roof, and charcoal powdercoated wintergarden louvers.
The project aims to deploy a limited palette of materials to achieve a quiet but elegant architecture.