Spa House by Metropolis Design

Set on the hills surrounding Cape Town, South Africa, this home is all about its exterior, from the lush landscape to the huge swimming pool which shapes the rest of the abode. But that doesn’t mean the expansive, day-lit interior spaces are any less spectacular: especially a surprise on the lower level.

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Spa House by Metropolis Design swimming pool
Spa House by Metropolis Design swimming pool viewing

Underwater spa and pool viewing areas migrate up to a flexible-walled poolside deck that can be opened to the elements, and living spaces overlooking all of the above (or rather: below). Wood slats provide shade without interfering with views.

Spa House by Metropolis Design living room
Spa House by Metropolis Design view

Metropolis Design made most levels open directly onto surrounding lawns, giving each room the sense of being connected to the outdoors both visually and physically.

“The building is conceived of as a hovering set of abstract sculptural elements, lightly suspended over a large waterscape, which forms an extended terrace on the mountainside,” say the architects.

Spa House by Metropolis Design kitchen

“The inter-penetration of two simple forms, in combination with the staggering of the floor plane, allows a surprising amount of volumetric complexity and spatial interplay in and around the building. Transparency, an apparent lack of structural support, and the gaps between elements, dematerialize the building and create a presence in the landscape which is of nature, despite its abstraction.”

Spa House by Metropolis Design wood facade

“Water as a rejuvenative element, constitutes the primary experience of the building and provides its symbolic language. The guest accommodation block hovers dramatically over the water and projects into space towards the mountain and sea. It shelters the dining area, itself submerged below water level. Pool decks are arranged as islands in a sea of water, connected by a bridge. The underwater spa with large viewing windows into the pool has a sense of stillness and mystery.”

“The ground floor opens up entirely and entrances the experience of the building as a light platform in a vast landscape.”