Architecture: Khalid Henaidy, Asia Khan
Location: Riyadh, Saudi Arabia
Scope: Complete Renovation
In Riyadh existing villas are often demolished by their new owners to allow for a new design to be built in order to correspond to their needs.
In this specific instance the client requested for a more sustainable approach that involved retaining the existing concrete shell and adapting it to a new given program.
The main challenge that the new design intends to resolve is centered on ensuring that the new design is capable of absorbing the existing shell whilst offering a radically new spatial order as well as a new architectural identity.
Whilst respecting a clear separation between guest and family areas the design develops spaces that are more open and informal that allow for a stronger connection between internal spaces as well as between the interior and the the exterior of the villa on the ground floor transforming the exterior into a direct extension of the internal living areas.
The removal of the preexisting staircase allows for a new central void in the family area that allows the family lounge area to be organized on two levels united by a sculptural freestanding spiral staircase and enables natural light to reach the center of the villa from the top level.
An entirely new floor is added on the last floor following a layout that is organized round a central patio with a geometry that simultaneously expresses itself to the exterior as a “villa on top of a villa” as well as endowing the villa with an expressive skyline.
The particular geometry of the building is further emphasized by the solution adopted for the facade that makes use of an external insulation system to make the building look as if it was made by stacked blocks with vertical openings clad with masharabiyas that ensure privacy and filter the natural light protecting the building from the harsh climate.