Atelier Vens Vanbelle has designed a project dubbed Alex guesthouse located at idyllic location near the Schelde (river), behind a garden in a coastal area of the city.
The owner of Alex Guesthouse has showbiz background and came up with the special demand to design something that would make his foreigner guests remember their stay for the rest of their lives. In addition, Alex also wanted space to give previews of films and other cultural presentations.
The project features a unique, sustainable and simple design which boasts an underground cinema and a watchtower with an outdoor shower. Interior of the guesthouse measures 1,614 sq ft (150 sq m) and its structure was built up layer by layer in the studio in 4 cm thick laminated wood. It was then relocated in four pieces and rebuilt on site. The corten steel facade cladding has been provided to make a combination of the structure with landscape.
The guest house comprise dining area, a bedroom and a basic kitchen at ground floor. To create special effects, Interior is finished in uncovered wooden layers and two porthole windows provide sufficient daylight.
“As a guest you literally descend into an alienating underground world before the ultimate log cabin is shown,” explains architects Atelier Vens Vanbelle. “Guests enter the new garden shed and bicycle shed through the living room of the client, after which they descend a staircase and end up in a long underground corridor. The disorientation is complete. A first surprise awaits them when they arrive in a small cinema hall with red curtains. David Lynch is not far away. Opposite there is a small, nice bar with an equally strange character.”
The cinema and bar are located underground and can be approached either from the main house via a garden shed within the guesthouse or using a spiral staircase which leads to the top of the watchtower. The watchtower contains an outdoor shower through which visitors can create fun while passing through.