In the Khai House, the architecture is worked within the context of an open garden dwelling to create a clear separation of functions without resorting to conventional dividers. The structure, on a corner plot, is of two interlocking forms at right angles to each other. The ingenuity in the scheme is derived from clear segregation of the levels: the dwelled (bedrooms on the second storey), the served (service in the basement) and be served spaces sandwiched in-between (living on the ground). This allows for the entire ground level to be a free plate for entertainment and living.
The approach to such definitive spatial design is further pursued by the removal of walls between spaces on the ground: physically, the delineation between the inside and the outside is blurred by the sliding glass panels that open the floor completely to the garden, and by the combination of stone, wood, concrete and timber screens that gently prompts the eye to carve out notional spaces and enclosures in what is an open ground plan without walls or a clear boundary line.
The garden design pays careful attention to the various framed views through the ground floor, such as in a vertical landscape wall next to the pool used as a device to muddy the distinction between the horizontal ground plane and the boundaries of the enclosure.
The effect is that ground level spaces open and flow seamlessly into the surrounding landscape. While there is no apparent clarity of spatial segregation, there is a notional sense of spatial distinctiveness – a separation of space that is more inituitive than physical.
The sensitivity to material and detail by the architect is especially apparent in the juxtaposition of the smooth azul limestone against the raw natural split yellow granite, the blackness of the swimming pool mosaics against the lush green vertical wall, and the lightness of the vertical
sliding glass panels besides the horizontality of the structural slab. The irregular stone modules, shifting floor patterns, and timber screens all demonstrates the architect’s attention to detail for this project.