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villa selvadolce

Category: Built

New development of 3 bedroom family villa - Liguria, Italy

Villa SD is a family villa in Bordighera, Liguria overlooking the Gulf of Montecarlo.
The house is composed of a single floor inserted into the landscape with 3 bedrooms, large open-plan living areas and utility spaces, outside patio, sun terrace, Pool and Whirlpool area. A series of green courtyard gardens define the internal floor plan and integrate natural  sunlight, ventilation and exotic vegetation into the living spaces. 
Warm timber interiors, open glass fronts,  tropical planting and Bali inspired finishes make you feel on holiday, creating a relaxed atmosphere of inside outside living.


Premio Special Nomination: In Architectura 2023 Liguria
Nomination: Best project 2023 - Archilover
Longlisted:  House of the year (Rural) -  Archello Awards 2023 
Pictures by GHA and Anna Positano

Villa Selvadolce is a single-family residential building of ca. 250sqm situated in the hills of Bordighera overlooking the Gulf all the way to Montecarlo. The villa plays with the steep landscape of the Ligurian terraces, becoming part of it. The natural stone facades have large openings facing the valley and the sea. The building is composed of a half subterranean volume arranged on a single floor, following the morphology of the ground. The stone containment walls and green roof create continuity between the building and the natural surrounding, embedding the house into the landscape surrounded by Mediterranean essences. The green roof minimizes the visual impact of the building. The only element popping out and breaking the linearity of the elevation is the stone Patio in the center, a mediating filter between inside and outside. The sun deck in Botticino stone is situated to one side of the building and opens up to the 4x12m infinity swimming pool with outside shower and adjacent whirlpool overlooking the magnificent panorama. 

The main entrance of the building is to the left side of the patio, with parking spaces on a lower level stepping up to a beautiful lawn with wide open views over the valley, framed by an olive tree. Entering the house, the visitor is promptly drawn towards a green yard, one of a series of green courtyard gardens which define the internal floor plan and integrate natural sunlight, ventilation and exotic vegetation into the living spaces, leading into the center of the building, the large open-plan living space. Open views and windows to each side highlight the distribution axes and illuminates naturally the circulation spaces. 


The front of the living room, with the dining and lounge area, is defined by a full glazed front and corner windows of approx. 12 m. The hidden frame enhances the effect of lightness and transparency, framing views of the pool, the patio, the garden and into the valley and the sea. The kitchen to the back of the space is framed by the internal exotic gardens, wherefore the entire living area is naturally illuminated and surrounded by nature.

The Living dining room extends to the front onto the patio, an open air outdoor area with a stone structure, sun shading timber fins to the roof and a rain cover when required. The patio is the perfect location for outside dining and lounge. The space is sheltered from the sun and offers breathtaking views towards the sea on the south side and towards the mountains on the west side. The patio is the only element breaking out of the natural morphology of the land and naturally divides the spaces of the building.


Internally, on the left side towards the entrance is situated the guest area with a home office and 2 bedrooms facing the lawn. On the right side is the master area of the house with bathroom and dressing area. The master area extends directly onto the pool deck. The corridor and service areas are all naturally illuminated by large open-able green skylight patios. The Villa incorporates a pantry, laundry, storage rooms, technical service rooms and external storage in the garage with 2 parking spaces

The windows play a key role in the project, maximizing views and light. Large openings floor to ceiling are designed to create an effect of continuity between inside and outside, frames are integrated in the structure to visually disappear, both from the outside through the natural stone cladding and the stone flooring and from the inside through the suspended ceilings and the incorporated timber furniture or plasterboard cladding to the walls.


The interior is defined by a simple timeless design with the use of high quality pure materials and details, as warm timber and stone and gypsum plaster. The build in furniture in natural oak is a bespoke design. Modulated systems are used to maximize spaces and efficiency. All doors into the living space are ceiling high in timber, adding to the flowing room arrangement which allows for functional and visual connection of the private and semi private areas

In the large living room, the open furniture shelf by the dining area becomes a separation to the entrance, a functional room divider which filters the light both ways while offering storage space for each space. On the opposite side, a large timber screen hides the TV and technical equipment within the room. The kitchen visually extends into the courtyards, which are all clad with timber slates. Timber fins to the roof filter direct sunlight, keeping open views onto the sky.

The design of the bedrooms shows a very efficient layout with build in wardrobes and multifunctional use. The Master bedroom wall is a bespoke design of timber panels, creating a unique design for the room. The bathrooms are clad with natural Botticino stone and fit out with oak furniture and stone sanitary ware. The rooms are illuminated by the above skylights, creating a sensational atmosphere. Each bathroom is extended by a skylight patio where the bath is positioned with timber cladding and exotic plants for an inside outside feeling of the bathroom. In the evening, the timber walls are illuminated by integrated wall washer lighting from the ceiling.


The conjunction with the nature offering impressive views over sea and mountains and the exposition towards the sun with internal courtyards were key elements for the design and the arrangement of the spaces. Natural sources and materials with local craftsmanship were used to define an environmentally sustainable design. The permeability of the terrain is maximized by using a combination of gravel and stone surfaces. The highly isolated subterranean shelf and the efficient control and use of solar and renewable energy, reduces significantly the energy consumption of the building while obtaining a superior house comfort, bringing the building up to Passivhaus standards.

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