Ncaved House by MOLD Architects, located on the Greek island of Serifos, is an intriguing holiday home that is literally buried in a hillside overlooking the Aegean Sea. Speaking to the reason for burying the home, the architect explains, “The need to create a protected shelter at a location of disarming view, but openly exposed to strong north winds, led us to the decision to drill the slope.” The front of the 3,800 square foot structure is fully open to the east view, while the rear windows frame indoor gardens, enhancing the airflow and letting light into the residence.
The wedge-shaped house reflects a three-dimensional rectangular grid that is designed as a “chessboard” composition of solids and voids. The structure has three stories, with bedrooms on the top floor, living and dining areas in the middle, and rooms for guests are located on the lower level. Materials such as stone, exposed concrete, wood, and metal are used to create a minimalist, yet rich interior, which reflects the natural beauty of the island. In designing Ncaved House, the architects aimed to create a “rough and natural” aesthetic in the home, and so decided to extract rocks from the site and repurpose them as walls. “This rough feeling of a natural cavity was what we hoped for with our choice of materials and color palette,” the architect explains.
The living areas are framed by the sea on one side and by glass on the other, which looks out into stone pits. A dramatic floating staircase ascends through the “caved” living areas. There is an abundance of windows and the shape of the home makes for excellent natural ventilation. The furnishings and interior design elements are spartan, with smooth concrete and granite surfaces conveying the cave theme. The sloping exposed-concrete ceiling imparts a sense of refuge from the elements and further directs the gaze toward the sea.
For more stunning architecture, check out Chapel of Sound by OPEN Architecture.