Villa Orizzonte


Located in the Po Valley of Northern Italy, Villa Orizzonte merges seamlessly with the surrounding landscape. We spoke to UNICA Architects about their vision for the design and how the use of Salvatori textures strengthened the natural link between the home’s interiors and the outdoor setting.

Can you tell us in your own words a little about the project. What was the inspiration behind the design?
The starting point for the design was a pre-existing farmhouse and our clients’ wish for a stand-alone, single-storey home with contemporary lines. The existing property was to be completely demolished and local building regulations meant we had to respect certain limits in terms of the footprint. This challenge became one of the key inspirations for the design as we played with the square metres of the pre-existing building by adding a suspended loggia. This not only provided shade on the south side which is exposed to the sun, but also creates a series of Mediterranean-style patios and open spaces that became distinctive elements of the design.

On our very first visit, we were struck by the amount of space and the view of the river banks and this led to us opting for a linear volume that inserted itself silently into the context and merged into the landscape in a way that worked with its distinctive nature. Right from the very beginning it was clear that it was necessary to go for an extremely horizontal approach and think very carefully about the composition of the roof which can be seen from the river bank.

The villa nestles into the surrounding scenery as an open form of architecture, with light, water and vegetation becoming constructive elements. The interior spaces ensure there is visual continuity, blurring the line between inside and outside, and creating a continuous tension between natural and manmade.

What particularly appeals about the Salvatori products you chose?
The standalone residences we design are always based on the client. It’s extremely important to take into account the tastes and needs of those who are going to live in a home, because every space will be perceived in a very subjective manner. With Villa Orizzonte, we focused on creating a dialogue between the natural and the artificial and so the geometries, the materials and colours lend the home an almost ethereal quality that underlines the idea of being immersed in nature and the surrounding landscape.

Salvatori stone works perfectly in this interplay of contrast between natural and artificial. The pared-back nature, the craftmanship, feel and lustre of Salvatori’s materials create inviting, timeless atmospheres and transmit a specific sensation wherever they are used.

The Salvatori textures used in the bathrooms and suite allowed us to give the home an atmosphere that was both warm and understated. We chose pale tones that work with the villa’s palette and showcase the colours of the vegetation outside. Among the vast selection of Salvatori materials and products, we found exactly what we were looking for, ie quality, originality and elegance.

Why did you choose Salvatori?
Right from the start we entrusted this project to Salvatori because of the capacity for the products to combine craftmanship, innovation, sustainability and design. All these aspects were fundamental for both the client and ourselves. Furthermore, Salvatori is one of the leading Italian names in the sector and it was important for us to work with a brand that we knew would deliver outstanding quality, reliability and products that would endure.

How did you find the experience of working with Salvatori?
We have worked with Salvatori on a number of projects and every experience has been very positive. There’s a great collaborative spirit and sense of synergy within the company, and we’ve always found the team available to help with any requirement or doubt, plus their contemporary products coincide with our design approach.

Is the client happy with the end result?
The client is extremely happy, particularly with the home’s capacity to transform and create different atmospheres and scenarios as the seasons change.

The materials and light play a key role in this because they help lend a unique atmosphere to the house, with the landscape and the horizon as integral elements.

And, a final question that is a little off-topic, but are you happy to share your 10 favourite songs that you listen to when you’re designing or looking for inspiration?
We frequently listen to instrumental music, soft electric and instrumental house music. This genre is very useful in helping us concentrate because there are no words and choruses to distract us so it becomes a gentle, rhythmic background for the design process.

Architecture: Lorenzo Capucci and Riccardo Robustini


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