November 01, 2020
How would you describe a luxury house? A country home with many rooms? A mansion with a contemporary design, swimming pool and hot tub? At Dualchas, we believe luxury homes are the ones that meet your every need, create a sense of warmth and comfort and inspire a spark of joy and excitement during your day to day life.
Location can make an ordinary property and extraordinary home. This is why Dualchas has such passion for bringing the land and the living together. With designs that take influence from the landscape and environment around a site, we strongly believe it is important to build with the land and not just on top of it.
You can see many examples of this in our previous projects. While designing Cliff House in north-west Skye, we took inspiration from local agricultural buildings, which could be found cut into the landscape. We used the natural dip of the building site to create a simple but stylish that mirrored the land around it. This design also allowed us to obey restrictions which were set to the build, which were that the building must be low lying and use natural materials.
While many architects may stick to the same designs for residential property, using the same techniques and material, Dualchas approaches each project with an open mind and from a fresh perspective.
Creativity and innovation are what’s needed to raise a design from the average to the joy-inspiring. This also includes the creative use of materials that make up a home. For example, when looking to blend our designs into the surrounding landscape, choosing the right finishing and attention to detail with the material can make all the difference.
Take, for example, our build for Breanish on the isle of Lewis, where the client wanted their property to reflect the island's rugged topology and weather while remaining warm and comfortable. To achieve this, we used a rough stone retaining wall, a rain screen made with larch and grey slate tiles for the roofing, which you could find littering the environment. For the interior, the simple palette of materials was used to express the space inside the property. It also helped to focus the eye out for the viewing windows towards the distinctive landscape.
Architecture mirrors the way we live our lives, and so to live in a luxury home is to have a property that meets all your needs. This is why we design every aspect of a build around our clients, how they live and what they’ll need from their dream home.
With our Scotasay project on the Isle of Harris, for example, our designs went through some development to match the lifestyle of the client. While visiting the site, we learnt that the client spent his time outdoors, working on his boats and transporting food and supplies up and down the small jetty. To match his lifestyle and improve the flow of his home, the design adapted into a series of pods linked by a top-lit corridor with service space forming a row to the rear for easier access.