Chalet SOLEYÂ used to be a charming mountain guide’s home. Back then it was only a fraction of the structure it is now. In 2014 transformation occurred. The owners changed and so did the chalet’s function. It became the new owners’ second home and went from being a small self-built structure to an updated and improved construction with modern flair.
The transformation of this lovely chalet in Les Houches, France was a project by Chevalier Architectes, a team of professionals that put their value of quality, innovation and sustainability, these being the three main distinctive characteristics for all their projects.
The team devotes its skills to the evolution of architecture by performing a wire range of activities which, in turn, allow them to offer their clients a complete execution of the project. Their style is a combination of diverse materials such as wood, glass and metal which they harmoniously integrate in the landscape.
The new owners wanted the chalet to offer more natural light and more spectacular views which they couldn’t really enjoy given the original layout and the small windows. The new design approach comes with an extension made of glass and black aluminum.
The new extension houses the shared spaces and was made for socializing. It contrasts with the original timber construction and has large full-height windows and glass walls as well as a covered deck with glass balustrades.
A big challenge for the designers was to avoid losing the original character and unique nature of the chalet while integrating a modern design full of innovative features. Some of the new features worth mentioning include the green roof deck, this being the first house in the area to have one.
Another interesting feature is the fifth facade which was built from the desire to respect the environment and to limit the views to the neighboring houses. Also, the chalet now uses solar energy. It has no North-facing openings and its sun-facing facades are opened up to capture as much light as possible.
During the transformation phase, the chalet was also insulated, this not influencing the design of the original construction. This portion has low ceilings and houses the private areas of the house and the chalet bedrooms. This leaves the social areas for the glass and metal extension.
The new extension also came with a series of other features, including a steam room and lovely outdoor spaces. The social area is a welcoming space which includes the main living room, an elegant dining space with expansive views of the surroundings and an open kitchen.
In terms of interior design, the approach was simple, modern and elegant. Elements such as the Filiofocus fireplace in the new living room have become focal points for the decor. The living room blends sophistication with simplicity and organic beauty. the Brick S coffee table shapes wooden trunks in an extraordinary way.
Every portion of the chalet, where old or new, has its own character. The bathrooms, for example, stand out in two ways. on one hand there’s the view and the huge window which brings light into the room. On the other hand, there’s the collection of quirky accessories and decorations such as the Cirkel wall mirror.
This duality of the chalet is also expressed in the form of two distinct entrances. One is the family entrance while the other is a guest entrance and has a more dramatic look.