Situated on the outskirts of Gryon, facing the Alps, the modest, yet refined architecture of this small, 100-year-old chalet gives it a fascinating and timeless beauty. The addition of extra volumes therefore requires extreme sensitivity to avoid undermining the building’s charm.
A small conservatory was moved up the slope and now acts as a garden shed. It has been replaced by an initial appended volume resembling an abstract miniature of the existing chalet. On the north side, a turret structure containing the bathrooms echoes the extension to the neighbouring chalet. These two new volumes, which appear to float on their bases, mutually strengthen their relationship with the existing building, from which they seem to grow like mushrooms. The anthracite zinc roofing enhances the impression of dynamic affinity.
The facades of the two excrescences are composed of alternating layers of untreated, heated and charred larch timber, thus installing a dialogue between old and new. They evoke dendrochronology and raw, natural materials. Inside, both volumes are completely white, highlighting the contrast between the wood of the chalet and these new spaces added to its exterior.
The basement picks up on the theme of layering with colourful wallpaper that plays on the sensation of extreme temperatures with a fuchsia red hallway and a small turquoise Turkish bath. The arched ceiling of the latter opens onto a large window, like a crevasse in the snow.