Where: Bordeaux, France
Size: 441 sq ft
Owner: Jérémie Buchholtz
Location, scarcity, affordability, and necessity drove Jérémie Buchholtz to look for a less obvious and unconventional home.
Jérémie Buchholtz , a freelance photographer, converted a dilapidated garage in Bordeaux into a studio apartment at a cost of 140,000 euros ($187,362). The new double-glazed glass portion of the facade is hidden behind a honey-colored pine door which slides shut to cover the facade and keep out prying eyes.
When the outside pine door slides open, the interior patio — with its teak decking, open-air roof and white garden furniture from the French furniture outlet Fly — is revealed along with double-glazed glass sliding doors that lead into the living area.
Despite the fact that the garage was priced at 80,000 euros ($107,000) — less than half the price of a similarly sized home in Bordeaux — it was still a rundown storage space, full of junk behind huge metal doors. Mr. Buchholtz, though, saw potential. The nondescript place, now a designer bachelor’s pad, is tucked away on a lane lined by converted 18th-century stables that house a burgeoning community of artists and young families.
Mr. de Marien designed a “house within a house,” a gleaming cube-shaped construction of Douglas pine that dominates the far end of the living area. “By combining all the factors of living in this self-contained cube — such as sleeping, washing, working and storing — we kept all of the necessities of Jérémie’s life in one place,” the architect said. “By building upwards towards the roof and internally into the heart of the cube, we had no need to spread these aspects throughout the living area.”
The Douglas pine cube, built at a cost of 9,389.50 euros ($12,565), contains and conceals the sleeping area, bathroom, laundry, dressing room, and storage space. Mr. Buchholtz works at a small office space on one side of the cube. The wheat-colored sofa bed in natural organic cotton, as with everything in the cube, was made to Mr. Buchholtz’s specifications.
+ Article by Nick James of NYTIMES
+ Photography by Valerio Mezzanotti for NYTIMES