Inside Outside House Built Around An Old Mango Tree In Indonesia

A strong connection between a house and its immediate surroundings is important. For that matter, context is important no matter the situation but how exactly does it impact the design of a residence? Since each project is unique, there’s no definite answer to that question. The Inside Outside House designed by Tamara Wibowo Architects, for example, maintains a close relationship with the outdoors by featuring large openings and glazed areas.

The house is built on a corner lot and enjoys a very strong and special connection with its immediate surroundings View in gallery
The house is built on a corner lot and enjoys a very strong and special connection with its immediate surroundings
The exterior walls of the house are clad in grey concrete and they contrast beautifully with the wood-lined openings View in gallery
The exterior walls of the house are clad in grey concrete and they contrast beautifully with the wood-lined openings
The contrast between wood and concrete is pleasant in more than one way, both visually and structurally View in gallery
The contrast between wood and concrete is pleasant in more than one way, both visually and structurally

The house is located in Semarang, Indonesia and was completed in 2015. It covers an area of 600 square meters organized into a geometric arrangement based on functions. That results in three main volumes. One is a living quarters which integrates an open kitchen, a dining area and a lounge space. There’s also an office volume which also includes the garage and the first volume is the service quarters.

The house's close relationship with the surroundings is expressed in various different ways, depending on the functionView in gallery
The house’s close relationship with the surroundings is expressed in various different ways, depending on the function
The swimming pool area is framed by concrete volumes on three sides, enjoying a high degree of privacyView in gallery
The swimming pool area is framed by concrete volumes on three sides, enjoying a high degree of privacy
The unique characteristics of the materials involved in the house's design and structure are emphasized through raw finishesView in gallery
The unique characteristics of the materials involved in the house’s design and structure are emphasized through raw finishes

At the center of these three quarters there’s a void and in that void grows an old mango tree which has been there for years. This is just one of the design elements which emphasize the house’s close relationship with nature and with its immediate surroundings. Another important detail is the fact that there are numerous large openings as well as a series of skylights, all meant to bring in natural light and to open up the interior spaces to the surroundings.

There's a very interesting relationship between the indoor and outdoor spaces. These sometimes overlapView in gallery
There’s a very interesting relationship between the indoor and outdoor spaces. These sometimes overlap
A series of tall pivot doors made of glass open up the dining area to the yard and bring in lots of natural light View in gallery
A series of tall pivot doors made of glass open up the dining area to the yard and bring in lots of natural light

The openings that we mentioned are lined in wood and this allows them to contrast with the concrete exterior walls. Also, a very beautiful relationship is established between these two materials in terms of interior design and decor. The cold, grey concrete is complemented by the warm wood and both materials are used in their raw and natural forms. This highlights their unique natural characteristics.

Inside the house, the overall decor is simple and each space has its own dose of uniquenessView in gallery
Inside the house, the overall decor is simple and each space has its own dose of uniqueness
The dining area is part of a large open floor plan but is neatly delineated by the patterned floor tilesView in gallery
The dining area is part of a large open floor plan but is neatly delineated by the patterned floor tiles
Polished concrete flooring unifies the indoor and outdoor spaces, creating a seamless visual connection between themView in gallery
Polished concrete flooring unifies the indoor and outdoor spaces, creating a seamless visual connection between them

A series of tall pivot glass doors expose one side of the living quarters to the garden while large sliding doors seamlessly connect it to the concrete terraces and the courtyard. The concrete flooring is one of the elements which ensure a unified look throughout and which allow the seamless overlapping of the indoor and outdoor spaces.

The interior functions of the house are organized in a practical and efficient manner, thus forming three large volumesView in gallery
The interior functions of the house are organized in a practical and efficient manner, thus forming three large volumes
The bedrooms open up to the views as well and have curtains for privacy and shadeView in gallery
The bedrooms open up to the views as well and have curtains for privacy and shade

The visual connection to the surroundings in maximized through the large glass openings but also through a careful selection of materials and finishes. The design strategies vary based on the function and the ambiance in each particular space.

Warm wood accents give the bathrooms a welcoming appearance, complementing the tiled walls and floorsView in gallery
Warm wood accents give the bathrooms a welcoming appearance, complementing the tiled walls and floors

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