A mews is a narrow street or lane that originally provided access to the stables and carriage houses of the well-to-do residential areas of cities. Over time, many of those former stables have been converted into homes, known as mews houses. Today’s small house is a newly built mews house, placed in the backyard of a large semi-detached Victorian home in Dublin, Ireland.
As the neighboring mews houses were built in a wide variety of styles, Boyd Cody Architects felt free to design the Alma Lane house as a simple, sculptural cube sitting in the walled garden. However they did clad the structure in brick to match the neighboring homes. The solid form of the cube is broken by a scattering of large windows, their openings set off from the rough brick by frames of smooth anodized aluminum.
The entrance to the 110 m2 (1,184 ft2) house opens to a wide hall. A large master suite, a good-sized second bedroom and a shared bathroom are on this level. At the end of the hall is the stairway leading up to the living area. The client requested a reverse floor plan, with the social spaces on the upper level, so as to have good all-day light and to take advantage of views over the garden wall.
A large combination living room and dining room takes up half the upper floor. The other half consists the kitchen in one corner, the stair hall in the middle, and a semi-outdoor patio space in the opposite corner. The tiled patio is separated from the rest of the house by glass walls and has a glass roof that slides open. All four spaces are connected by doorways, inviting circulation throughout the living space.
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