This architectural house (ma! Ca) in Montpellier, France is all sweet things


In the historic center of a well-preserved village, opposite the church, a wine barn and its adjoining house had to be restructured (my! Ca) architecture in order to create an intimate and privileged living environment.Heritage and prestige elements remained in the existing house: the stone staircase, the cement tiles and the wooden roof frame, while the large volume and minimalist forms of the barn were transformed into a space of open and fluid living, opening to the outside by a square patio at the back.

The space of the existing house is devoted to the bedrooms, while the old wine barn accommodates the activities of daily family life. The archetypal barn shape, all in a long structure, successively provides the kitchen, living room and large table overlooking the patio and the pool. The position of the swimming pool, adjoining the building, creates various atmospheres for each moment of life, making it possible to feel the seasonal rhythms through the natural vibrations of air and matter.

Outside, part of the roof of the original barn was removed to design the open-air patio. The composition of this space – between four walls – echoes the Mediterranean lifestyle. In addition, the choice was made to keep one of the gabled stone walls of the barn, a vestige of the past, to ensure the thermal efficiency of the building. Limestone maintains the right level of humidity throughout the night, especially in summer, keeping the place cool and pleasant to use.

The patio also includes half of the lap pool. The “half-pool, half-patio” motif gives this slice of water its fundamental posture: it is the pivot of the overall exterior composition and links it to the interior.

The three dimensions of architecture, history and technicality are in dialogue and this project writes a “tailor-made” story in every detail, giving the place its own unique spirit.

Photo credit: Julien Kerdraon


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