Two Functions in One Luxury Setting: SAOTA Lake House, Switzerland

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This stunning contemporary residence and office/guest annex on the shore of Lake Geneva, Switzerland, is the work of architects at SAOTA (Stefan Antoni Olmesdahl Truen). Between the linear, vaulted gallery/entrance and the main façade — a fluid form of concrete and glass — is a sunny landscaped sculpture garden. The complex’s two separate structures, home and office, are separated by the indoor pool, spa, sauna, media room, and garages. From this level, a handy stone path also leads directly to the lake; upstairs, you’ll find open-air living at its finest, with expanses of glass to let in summer light and to offer a terrific view of water activities. In the cold of wintertime, the heated pool, sauna, and spa provide a welcome soothing touch.

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The house’s geometry ingeniously blends it with its environment: note the neat brick retaining wall on the hillside into which the house’s lower level fits as snugly as if it grew there. The exterior is bright, crisp, and clean: white brick walls, oval metallic sculpture in apt juxtaposition with squared planters, random narrow vertical windows. From inside, a triangular deck seems a mere extension of an indoor casual seating area; overhead is a sweeping overhang with the shape of a bird’s wing. Interior structures are bold sculptural shapes: wide, curved pillars of wood, columns of glass enclosing the stairs, a clever fireplace chimney suspended from the ceiling. As befits the scale of the house, the entertainment center is super-sized, the space expansive enough for a crowd. But this is home, through and through — a multi-use space with clear functions, clean lines, and great style.

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