Although the immediate surroundings definitely play an important role in the design of this beautiful tourist attraction, the main source of inspiration actually comes from elsewhere. Villa Boreale is located in a forest clearing in the Charlevoix region of Quebec, in Canada. Its architecture and design, however, are inspired by the typical Scandinavian cottages and barns.
The villa was designed and built by CARGO Architecture, a studio formed in 2006 but which only recently (2013) changed its name into the one we’ve mentioned. The new name better defines the practice, symbolizing the cognitive exchange that happens throughout every project. Their creative, round-table approach allows them to make each project unique and to make the most of every feature and element.
As far as the overall design goes, the architects wanted to make the building blend in with the surroundings while also standing out in a subtle way. They combined natural textures and materials such as wood and concrete with black metal cladding for a contrasting and elegant effect.
The building is beautifully positioned. It sits on a gentle slope with views of the valley and the forest and this was important when creating and calculating its design and orientation. Special attention was given to all the windows.
Each window and opening was carefully designed to ensure the optimal size and orientation so that they can each capture beautiful views and to highlight the beauty of the surroundings. In addition, the disposition of the windows also ensures constant natural light throughout the day.
The architects were also careful to offer a good balance between the views and the level of privacy that the villa offers. The windows and openings in general do not interfere with the level of intimacy required for each room of the house.
Even though the footprint of the villa is quite small (only 164 square meters/ 1775 sq ft), the interior is not tiny or cluttered with furniture and partitions. The villa was designed to be in harmony with nature and with its surroundings and this influenced both its architecture and interior design.
Villa Boreale was completed in 2015 and can accommodate up to 14 people. It can be rented as a whole throughout the year. The interior is partitions into two levels. There’s the ground floor which includes the kitchen, living room and social spaces in general and there’s also a mezzanine level.
The mezzanine floor is a flexible space which incorporates the master bedroom, a playroom for kids, a reading corner and a quiet nursing area. Its configuration can be adapted and reorganized according to the users’ immediate needs.
The villa has four bedrooms and a total of 12 sleeping areas. It also has three bathrooms which potential space for a fourth one on the mezzanine level if this proves to be a requirement in the future. All the rooms offer beautiful views of the surroundings and the living area even featured large sliding glass doors which connect the space to an outdoor terrace.
The design of the villa is flexible and inspired by rural cottages and barns but with a clear contemporary approach to the style. The interior décor is clean and simple, emphasizing the brightness of the spaces and their harmonious connection with the outdoors.
The design as a whole can easily adapt over time and what is now a cozy touristic housing project could eventually become something more complex in the future. There is already room for an extra bathroom and extensions and annexes could also be added if required. Over time, this beautiful little area could attract more and more tourists, taking advantage of its wonderful location, the intimacy of the site and the exquisite views which visitors can admire thanks to the carefully organized décor.