Le Pine House in Saint Tropez, France by SAOTA

A Luxurious Family Home

Architects  :  SAOTA Architecture and Design
Photos  ©  Adam Letch

Villa Le Pine is a comfortable family summer house in Saint-Tropez that has become a modern interpretation of the traditional architecture of the Mediterranean Riviera on the Côte d'Azur. Free from the constraints  free from the constraints of historical language, the project by the renowned South African studio SAOTA was an opportunity to realise an expression of the form, space and authentic lifestyle associated with the Provence region. 

SAOTA director Stefan Antoni :

"When we first walked onto the site and found ourselves in the midst of a beautiful pine forest, we could easily read the volumes of the future building under the crowns of the pine trees. This was an important clue for the design"

The house is set between two rectilinear side wings spanning the central courtyard. The bedrooms occupy entirely one wing and the upper level of the second wing, with the kitchen and dining room downstairs.  The master suite has a dedicated staircase that leads to a separate large sitting room. The main living and entertaining areas are located in the centre block and are topped by a gracefully curved soaring ceiling that gives the interior a sense of grandeur.

Phillippe Fouché, chief architect on the project :

"Our first challenge was to try to maximise the perception of space. We achieved this by creating large spaces that make it feel as if the interior spaces extend outwards to the front of the site."

 Phillippe Fouché, chief architect on the project :

 "Wherever possible, we tried to fill the volumes with light."

The interior of the building was conceived on the principle of a gallery, which included the creation of open spaces, where possible with overhead light. Ceiling windows illuminate the interior with natural light and provide a view of the pine thickets on the slopes near the house. Other frameless windows and openings overlook the terraces, further integrating the interior and exterior.

Interior finishes contrast with the raw, expressive concrete of the ceiling - such as the dark marble panelling of the rear walls, the lighter stone at the front of the house and the veined travertine floors. The natural materiality emphasises the architecture as an extension of the landscape, while the dark stone at the rear of the living room emphasises the illusion of depth, further enhancing the sense of space.

Architecturally, Le Pine House explores the potential for a new expression of the spirit of Saint-Tropez, drawing on SAOTA's insights from decades of designing homes on Cape Town's Atlantic coast, liberating its interior spaces and creating a refreshing lifestyle inside and out.

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