You see it rising from the hillside — this sleek, luxury home on Plettenberg Bay in South Africa, by SAOTA (Stefan, Antoni, Olmesdahl, Truen Architects) — and you know you’re in for something special. Soaring white planes rise above the multistory dwelling tucked into the mountainside; one of those planes is the roof of a penthouse that, as the architects put it, “…floats over the main building, enjoying 360° views.” And, because of skylights and openings in all the overhanging roofs up to that level, every floor of this magnificent home has plenty of natural light. The architects also say, “Generous indoor / outdoor living spaces and landscaped terraces have elevated garden living to the upper levels.” Indeed, natural stone and plantings cover all the steep grades with color, lush ground cover, and trees that provide extra privacy.
The outdoor living spaces include not one, but two infinity pools — one with stepping stones — and sunbeds covered by wood-slat pergolas. An open floor plan segues two seating areas together into one seamless “living room” that can handle a crowd. Décor is “barefoot” casual, albeit modern: a glass-and-sawhorse table indoors, alfresco tables and chairs, plush cushioned couches and ottomans that invite propping feet up for a long chat. Note the telescope at one corner for stargazing — or simply contemplating the azure seas by day. And upstairs, in the private areas of the home, indulgence awaits in bathrooms with deep soaking tubs, double-sink vanities, and double-sized showers. Clear glass forms a subtle protective barrier between inside and outside when it’s needed; otherwise, with doors slid open, the sky and the views from the penthouse know no limits.