Hiža is a cottage designed by Zagreb-based Proarh Studio. The objective of the project was a contemporary reinterpretation of traditional cottage architecture from the region Zagorje, Croatia. The hardest part was finding the craftsmen who could lay down the straw roof and the straw facade in a traditional way but with up-to-date details, like the crossing from the roof to the vertical facade.
“Inspiration was found in the traditional architecture of Zagorje region. Untouched nature on the site called for an unintrusive design which was found in the interpretation of the traditional cottage, straw covered house with basic spaces.” – PROARH
The pre-existing traditional Zagorje cottage was in poor condition and was renovated taking into consideration local heritage and design. The house form is kept, while the porch is substituted with a glass cube, which is slided out of the main volume, simultaneously forming an entrance area. The innovative usage of straw,on both roof and walls, wooden plank bearing construction and an aluminum glass cube structure, makes this house a hommage to the culture and heritage of the Zagorje region.
Used technology was basic and from local craftsmen. The straw covering on the roof is replaced with a new one and extended over the facade, while the gables are newly wood-lined. The existing stone piedestal is kept, while the newly designed terrace is layed with a wood planks. The entrance walkway is made of tree stumps.As such the cottage becomes ‘organic’, easily renovated from locally available resources, it breathes and changes with time, creating a healthy living environment.
The pre-existing traditional Zagorje cottage is situated on the green slopes near Kumrovec and was structurally and statically in poor condition. It was renovated taking into consideration the characteristics of local heritage and design. The pre-existing house form is kept, while the porch is substituted with a glass cube. To give the cottage southern exposure, the glass form is slided out of the main house volume, simultaneously forming an entrance area.
Interaction of interior and exterior spaces is enabled by opening of the glass walls. The cottage consists of three floors: the basement, ground floor and 1st floor, which is comprised of the essential living spaces- leisure/dining/cooking on groundfloor and sleeping areas on the 1st floor. Groundfloor spaces are then arranged following a traditional system of organisation that creates a common zone with the ‘hearth’.
The straw covering on the roof is replaced with a new one and extended over the facade, while the gables are newly wood-lined. The entrance walkway is made of tree stumps. The existing stone piedestal is kept, while the newly designed terrace is layed with a wooden floor from where it opens up to an impressive Zagorje landscape.As such the cottage becomes ‘organic’, easily renovated from locally available resources and workmanship, it breathes and changes with time, creating a healthy living environment.
The innovative usage of straw, considered largely an archaic and forgotten material, on both roof and walls combined with wooden plank bearing construction and an aluminum glass cube structure, makes this modest house a subtle yet luxurious hommage to the wealth of culture and heritage of the Zagorje region.
Project name: Hiža cottage
Location: Brezakovec 59, 49296 Croatia
Coordinates: 46.095158, 15.653763
- Type By Characteristic: Cabin / Hut / Cottage, Barn House, Holiday House, Renovation / Expansion / Extension : House
- Type By Site: Hill House, Countryside / Suburb House
- Type By Size: Medium House – (201 sqm – 450 sqm)
- Type By Materials: Wooden House
Floor Area: 230 sqm
Site Area: 3,865 sqm
Construction Period: 2011-2012
Completion Year: 2013
Client / Owner / Developer: Private
Architects: PROARH – Kneza Mislava 15 Zagreb, HR, 10000 Croatia
Project Team: Davor Matekovic and Oskar Rajko
Text Description: © Courtesy of PROARH
Images: © PROARH, Damir Fabijanic