Edit! renovates an old brick guardhouse to create a family home in prague

by Hans Henzen

situated on a small island on the banks of prague‘s vltava river, czech design studio edit! has transformed a former guardhouse into a new family residence. the existing building, which dates back to the austro-hungarian empire, had been abandoned for decades and left to decay. this new intervention works within the remaining brick shell to create the two story ‘house on an island.’

considering that the building is in fact located in a flood zone, edit! added a new layer of concrete on top of the existing wall, raising all the main rooms above the floodplain level. the program is split over two levels. on the first floor, an open-plan kitchen, dining and living area dominates the space. a black metal spiral staircase features in the center of the house rising up to the more private upper level, which comprises a bedroom, bathroom and study space.

the existing façades, which are made out of pitch faced bricks called ‘zvonivky’, have been retained to symbolize the building’s origin. surrounded by chestnut trees, the canopy of leaves provides an element of seclusion and privacy, while the terrace on the upper level allows calm views of the nearby stromovka park.

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