Architects: Joachim Fritschy     Photography: Rasmus Norlander     Construction Period:  2018     Location:  Samöens, France

The question of adapting traditional mountain constructions to the wishes of owners who wish to rehabilitate them into holiday homes poses an often difficult equation between conservation and the modification of the use. The cottages were built in 1956, had characteristic interior typologies to the cottages of the Giffre Valley.

The day parts of the chalets were introverted, minimizing the relationship with the external panorama that surrounds them. The main cottage had already undergone several interior modifications which meant that it had to be completely redesigned.

The renovation project is based on the desire to rethink a typology oriented on the panorama. The structures of the buildings were preserved to the maximum. The conservation of the architectural heritage was the central issue of the project.

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The facades have been redesigned in order to resume an order according to the existing structure and the panorama. The main chalet organizes a kitchen and dining room – living room, dressing room, bathroom on the ground floor. Upstairs, the 3 new double rooms radiate around the staircase and the bathroom.

The basement has been upgraded to accommodate a dormitory and technical parts. The secondary cottage organizes a kitchenette – living room and bathroom on the ground floor. Upstairs the new bedroom occupies the entire floor. Research into the uniformity of spaces by materials was a central issue of the project. The use of materials such as the 3-ply spruce panel for the ceiling, partitions, and floor make it possible to homogenize and unify.

Text description provided by the architect.