Location:

Nottingham, UK

Status:

Full planning permission

Scale:

2000sqm

Constraints:

Conservation area

Serenity House

 

LUXURY LIFESTYLE

LUXURY LIFESTYLE

 

 

Designed for forward-thinking clients, Serenity is an innovative house that provides an environmentally friendly luxury dwelling for modern living by harnessing its location and renewable energy sources.

 

Serenity provides formal and private rooms set in wings, typical of large 18th Century houses, but reconstructed within a continual loop around a central sunken courtyard and garden. The dwelling achieves Passivhaus minimal energy use standards in an organic form while still allowing for luxuries, such as a cinema room and swimming pool. A key feature is the waterfall which can be controlled to become a projection screen for outdoor cinema, or backlit to form a lighting stage for the car gallery.

...full text

 

Designed for forward-thinking clients, Serenity is an innovative house that provides an environmentally friendly luxury dwelling for modern living by harnessing its location and renewable energy sources.

 

Serenity provides formal and private rooms set in wings, typical of large 18th Century houses, but reconstructed within a continual loop around a central sunken courtyard and garden. The dwelling achieves Passivhaus minimal energy use standards in an organic form while still allowing for luxuries, such as a cinema room and swimming pool. A key feature is the waterfall which can be controlled to become a projection screen for outdoor cinema, or backlit to form a lighting stage for the car gallery.

 

NPPF Paragraph 79 states:

 ‘[It] should be truly outstanding and ground-breaking, for example in its use of materials, methods of construction or its contribution to protecting and enhancing the  environment, so helping to raise standards of design  more generally in rural areas. The value of such a building will be found in its reflection of the highest standards in contemporary architecture, the significant enhancement of its immediate setting and its sensitivity to the…

characteristics of the local area.”

 

Clause 11 of (former) PPS7

The house is seen as an evolution of the English Country House, a model that has evolved since medieval times. The saying ‘an Englishman’s home is his castle’, is something that has been borne out of this evolution and reflects the need for sanctuary and safety from the outside world. The earliest country houses were often those of large landowners, set within fortifications to protect from other landowners.  The landscape and waterscape was formed out of necessity, sculpted for defense in the form of ponds and moats, and as drainage and sustenance. Main halls were often the only rooms kept warm and were used for multiple functions and window openings were typically small with no glass.

 

Over time the fortifications became part of the outside wall of the house, in the great houses of the 16th and 17th century, such as Hardwick Hall, Castle Howard, Wollaton Hall and Chatsworth House. Houses were often symmetrical with wings for servants and activities, and in urban settings, perpendicular to the street. The primary living storey was typically raised above the ground level on a Piano Noble. Rooms began to take on specific functions, in a procession of spaces, supported by servant’s corridors. The landscape was often highly designed but made to appear natural with waterways reconfigured into lakes and ponds. Formal lawns and fountains along with walled gardens were created around the immediate house and outbuildings.

 

As industrialisation lead to a shift in the economic demographic, the merchant classes rose in wealth and the country house became more prevalent, often more modest. This included Victorian neo-classic, neo-gothic works and Arts and Craft exemplars such as those by Mackintosh, Webb and Lutyens. The architecture often became less formal, expressing the function of the house externally.

Over this time the function of the country house, changed from that of a fort to a retreat to a primary residence, yet the importance of leisure and past time was retained.

 

In the 20th century the international style combined with a rising accessibility to the automobile, gave birth to elegant white edifices where glass and openness were set against glorious leafy backgrounds. Since this uniformity of style (but not design) the architecture of the country house has shifted to one of great variety but sadly often not great architecture.

 

Now we are in the 21st century, engulfed by data, emerging technology, and facing the most serious challenge to civilization through climate change, the country house has a new importance. The role of security still remains, the need to embrace environmental design has risen, along with the need for adaptation to climate change, yet in the end the country house must still be a place of joy, of leisure and of beauty.

 

Serenity House, which has secured full planning permission, evolves this very English historic tradition into its one genre – the “Arts and Technology Movement” .

 

RIBA: 'We would welcome the opportunity to add Serenity to our drawing archives. Your drawings and its story of the English Country House is very compelling’

 

-Charles C.W. Hind, FSA Chief Curator and H.J. Heinz Curator of Drawings RIBA British Architectural Library

Designed for forward-thinking clients, Serenity is an innovative house that provides an environmentally friendly luxury dwelling for modern living by harnessing its location and renewable energy sources.



Serenity provides formal and private rooms set in wings, typical of large 18th Century houses, but reconstructed within a continual loop around a central sunken courtyard and garden. The dwelling achieves Passivhaus minimal energy use standards in an organic form while still allowing for luxuries, such as a cinema room and swimming pool. A key feature is the waterfall which can be controlled to become a projection screen for outdoor cinema, or backlit to form a lighting stage for the car gallery.



NPPF Paragraph 79 states:



‘[It] should be truly outstanding and ground-breaking, for example in its use of materials, methods of construction or its contribution to protecting and enhancing the environment, so helping to raise standards of design more generally in rural areas. The value of such a building will be found in its reflection of the highest standards in contemporary architecture, the significant enhancement of its immediate setting and its sensitivity to the… characteristics of the local area.”.



Clause 11 of (former) PPS7.



The house is seen as an evolution of the English Country House, a model that has evolved since medieval times. The saying ‘an Englishman’s home is his castle’, is something that has been borne out of this evolution and reflects the need for sanctuary and safety from the outside world. The earliest country houses were often those of large landowners, set within fortifications to protect from other landowners. The landscape and waterscape was formed out of necessity, sculpted for defense in the form of ponds and moats, and as drainage and sustenance. Main halls were often the only rooms kept warm and were used for multiple functions and window openings were typically small with no glass.



Over time the fortifications became part of the outside wall of the house, in the great houses of the 16th and 17th century, such as Hardwick Hall, Castle Howard, Wollaton Hall and Chatsworth House. Houses were often symmetrical with wings for servants and activities, and in urban settings, perpendicular to the street. The primary living storey was typically raised above the ground level on a Piano Noble. Rooms began to take on specific functions, in a procession of spaces, supported by servant’s corridors. The landscape was often highly designed but made to appear natural with waterways reconfigured into lakes and ponds. Formal lawns and fountains along with walled gardens were created around the immediate house and outbuildings.



As industrialisation lead to a shift in the economic demographic, the merchant classes rose in wealth and the country house became more prevalent, often more modest. This included Victorian neo-classic, neo-gothic works and Arts and Craft exemplars such as those by Mackintosh, Webb and Lutyens. The architecture often became less formal, expressing the function of the house externally.Over this time the function of the country house, changed from that of a fort to a retreat to a primary residence, yet the importance of leisure and past time was retained.



In the 20th century the international style combined with a rising accessibility to the automobile, gave birth to elegant white edifices where glass and openness were set against glorious leafy backgrounds. Since this uniformity of style (but not design) the architecture of the country house has shifted to one of great variety but sadly often not great architecture.



Now we are in the 21st century, engulfed by data, emerging technology, and facing the most serious challenge to civilization through climate change, the country house has a new importance. The role of security still remains, the need to embrace environmental design has risen, along with the need for adaptation to climate change, yet in the end the country house must still be a place of joy, of leisure and of beauty.



Serenity House, which has secured full planning permission, evolves this very English historic tradition into its one genre – the “Arts and Technology Movement”



'We would welcome the opportunity to add Serenity to our drawing archives. Your drawings and its story of the English Country House is very compelling’



-Charles C.W. Hind, FSA Chief Curator and H.J. Heinz Curator of Drawings RIBA British Architectural Library

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