A Glimpse into the Enchanting Courtyards of Two Extraordinary Properties

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A Glimpse into the Enchanting Courtyards of Two Extraordinary Properties


Nature intertwines with architectural brilliance in these two exceptional properties, where enchanting courtyards evoke a sense of awe and wonder. Our first stop transports us to the charming village of Poothurai, India, where The Little Red House beckons with 3750 square feet of Indo-French charm. Nestled near Auroville International township, this weekend getaway combines contemporary sophistication with a touch of earthy tranquility. Meanwhile, in Miyazaki City, Kyushu, Japan, a long and narrow site defies its urban constraints by incorporating three captivating courtyards, each with its own distinctive design and purpose. Enjoy an immersive exploration of nature as we uncover the secrets of these extraordinary and intimate outdoor spaces.


Visualizer: Architecture_Interspace   

The Little Red House is a 3750-square-foot home, nestled in Poothurai, India, offering an idyllic escape from the bustling city life of Pondicherry and Auroville.

The red brick home was designed to incorporate the traditional Indo-French architecture of the area with a contemporary, sophisticated twist.

The home design incorporates the local environment to create a grand entrance and a captivating courtyard within.

The layout of the property was based upon the climate mitigation factors adopted by traditional Indian and French courtyard houses. The result was a home that seems larger than its actual proportions because of its relationship with the landscape.

The red earth soil nourishes the lush environment, intensifying the uplifting essence of the location.

Slender trees seek the sun in the central courtyard. Their foliage offers shade across the lawn and a winding stone pathway.

The whimsical stone pathway traverses the full length of the grassy courtyard design.

A side entrance to the pool terrace builds a picture-perfect frame around a section of the courtyard, like a small snapshot.

The swimming pool design includes a row of underwater stools so the family can hang out in the cool shallows while sipping cold drinks at the swim-up bar.

Frameless windows build a light-filled hallway with a beautiful courtyard view. This plot of land has no outward views, so attention is diverted to internal spaces.

An L-shaped pond is constructed outside the border of the glass-walled walkway. Lily pads float gracefully within.

A wrought iron spiral staircase ascends from the courtyard to the second level of the home. Jaali walls filter the sunlight that enters the external living space.

Entry to the house is made through the rectangular courtyard, which is also used to host small gatherings.

The pool terrace and party lawn are utilized for larger get-togethers.

The L-shaped body of the house surrounds the courtyard so that all rooms benefit from its beauty.

The entry to the villa is intentionally simple to focus visitors’ attention upon the magnificent green courtyard and natural backdrop.

The red earth brick walls are inspired by the distinctive character of the village and are locally sourced.

Roof plan.

Floor plan.

Entrance gateway.

The colonnades.

Courtyard typology.


Architect: Takeshi Ishiodori Architecture  

This modern home exterior stands near downtown Miyazaki City, Kyushu, Japan. This densely populated area presented a challenge in creating a lush green living space for the client.

The plot is long and narrow, running north to south. A parking lot and a road are located to the south of the main entrance.

In answer to the challenge, three distinctive courtyards were created, each with a special function.

The main courtyard is uncovered on the south side of the living room. A sense of peace exudes from this zen inspired design, bestowing peace upon the surrounding rooms.

The courtyard resembles a natural thicket of trees and shrubs, delicately arranged around a serene koi fish pond. The green space encourages the homeowners to spend time outdoors amongst flora and fauna, which is beneficial for both physical and mental health.

A round door frame makes the courtyard and koi pool into a stunning vignette, which is enjoyed from the dining room.

At night, the courtyard comes alive with outdoor lights.

Traditional Japanese shoji doors close across the magical vista.

Between the living room and the bedroom, the sub-yard serves as a secondary garden. Here, residents can be soothed by the elements of nature in a more intimate and private green space.

The gray slate tiles that adorn the exterior parts of the building are repeated inside to create a restful cohesivity that blurs the boundaries. The same gray slate is featured right from the front entryway of the home so that the theme is consistent.

The third courtyard is privately screened around an open-air bathtub, offering a tranquil sanctuary for relaxation and rejuvenation. The slate and stone-clad tub looks like a modern garden water feature, with a wide waterfall faucet. Stone steps climb up to the brim, allowing the homeowner to step down into the water, in a sunken bathtub arrangement.

The sweet embrace of nature begins in the northernmost bedroom. The morning light trickles through the treetops of the secondary courtyard.

The main courtyard becomes a daily living room, where the family can pass time with the resident koi fish.

This central oasis also serves as an entertaining area for guests in the evenings. A glass pergola above the linked living area protects social gatherings from the elements. The idyllic natural backdrop encourages deep conversation as the moon comes up and stars shine.

The main and secondary courtyards present open views of the property, from the primary garden in the south to the northern bedroom.

Recommended Reading:  51 Captivating Courtyard Designs That Make Us Go Wow

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