True to its name, the Butterfly House is as captivating as it sounds. The architects envisioned countless butterflies alighting on the meadow site and that became the inspiration for the house itself.
Butterfly House was designed for retiring clients who wanted to have a peaceful retreat house as well as a relaxing chamber when their grown children visit. The search for the site has been meticulously done. The clients spent two years searching for the perfect site with a spectacular piece of land which they found in Carmel-by-the-Sea, United States. This has motivated the designers to do their best in meeting their clients’ expectations who expressed a desire to integrate indoor and outdoor spaces with a simple yet modern aesthetic along with separate spaces for the growing family.
The designers come up with the idea of building three distinct pavilions, each topped with their own enchanting roofs that resemble the butterflies. Each pavilion has its own function too. The central pavilion consists of the main living, dining and cooking spaces while the other two are reserved for sleeping, bathing and relaxing. The pavilion’s structures may be modest in size but as each one opens out at the back with dramatic views of the canyon below the house and the surrounding Californian hills in distance, all three feel sprawling and free.
Another great concept of the house is the way butterfly roofs bring in view of the surrounding hills and harvest rainwater. Yes, they’re not purely decorative. As water is an increasingly limited resource, this has become a very important feature. Each roof funnels water to a landscape collection pools which is then gathered in cisterns serving as storage that will be used to irrigate the landscape. Clever, right?
Looking at its interior, the house is filled with a neutral palette covering the concrete floors and walls, large glass windows and doors, plywood ceilings and steel supports. Concrete and immense glazing absorb heat during the day and release it at night causing the house to use very little energy along with an out-of-sight solar panel system that helps sustain the home’s energy needs.
Architect: Feldman Architecture