On the shop front of one of the oldest houses of the Brouwersgracht the following slogan was written in Dutch: “Through time a sprout becomes a tree”. This tiny house, scarcely five meters wide and not more than seven meters in depth, with two low levels and a sparred roof construction is in fact unsuitable for modern living. The owners had their previous home behind the dunes of Scheveningen renovated by Sjoerd Soeters now asked him to renovate their precious new miniature property into a spacious house along the canal.
By opening up the rear side of each floor at a strategic location, all in consultation with the Historical Society, and by connecting the two top passages with a staircase through which the bathroom and kitchen become even wider, arises a space in the created “sprout” of the house. Here an adult-sized room can be created on each floor. A three level turret that forms the casing of the staircase fills the space of the zoning plan up to a depth of eleven meters behind the façade. Without losing its complete visibility and stateliness, it also offers the staircase a double opening for it to ascend regally toward the top floor where, under the hood of the house, the sleeping area is to be found and in the expansion behind it, the bathing area. The living room behind the hallway is opened up along the long side to a patio with folding doors. The floors of the room and patio provide a strong connection between both areas, as both floors are covered with similar light limestone. The elongated area, which ends with a diagonal kitchen, is despite its location facing north remarkably light. All because of the application of two sets of skylights over the full length of the area, and as a consequence the leftover narrow ceiling strip is made into an exceptionally powerful shaft.
[A] Sjoerd Soeters
[P] 95 m2 existing, 65 m2 expansion