A modernist luxury home set on the cliffside of Pezula Private Estate, Knysna. Forms intersect and merge with nature. With the help of rock cladding and planted roofs the large footprint of the house disappears into the landscape.

The massing and architectural strategy to reduce the visual impact of the double storey home on its location, was to cut the ground floor into the site as far as possible. The lower level, clad in local rock and covered entirely with planted roofs where exposed, disappears below ground level as viewed from the northerly approach and the rest of the estate. Secondary courtyards and skylights allow additional connections to air and light for the spaces contained within, besides connections to the primary courtyard and views.

The upper levels, dedicated to bedrooms, are conceived as simple elegant extrusions that allow views and light to enter all of the spaces. Low mono-pitched concrete roofs splay open towards the north to help achieve this intent. The more feminine plastered and painted finish of the upper bedroom levels off-set against the masculine identity of the rugged rock clad storey below. To take advantage of the views down, the primary bedroom axis is elevated above the lower storey right on the edge of the cliff line.

Photographs: Johann Lourens