The purity of Lapitec® in a dialogue between nature and structure

Project Name: Villa Manta, Sardinia, Italy
Date of completion: September 2016
Material: Bianco Crema  - Satin and Vesuvio; Sahara, Tabacco - Satin
Application: external and internal cladding

A design challenge in the heart of Sardinia, to create a real "family home" out of a 70's villa. Lapitec® is a feature of the interior and exterior cladding: more than 1000 sq m to create a unique perceptive impact, of great harmony and elegance.

International clients, a villa made up of two residential units, a 5000 sq m park and a view of one of the most attractive beaches on the coast of Sardinia. The request? To transform this space into a “family home” to be enjoyed in every season of the year and of life, a place to take in and acquaint yourself with, where the interior and exterior recall and permeate each other. In addition, it had to be done while fully respecting what was already there. It was the GAAP studio that designed all of this: three young professionals who have chosen to bring their stylistic approach to an architectural context that is well defined and strongly linked to tradition.

Lapitec® to transport sensations

To be able to express the emotional value of the whole design and make it perceptible, it was essential to identify the material. From the beginning, the full body sintered stone was chosen for the purity of its finishes and colours that make it unique on the market. From the initial design stages, the GAAP studio had imagined using a white stone material with no impurities or veining in it, and which was available in large slabs. For the villa in Sardinia, they opted for Bianco Crema with a Satin finish – applied to the interior floors and the cladding in some of the bathrooms – and a Vesuvio finish for all of the exterior paving. The Sahara and Tabacco colours with a Satin finish were also used in some bathrooms and the spa. This has created a strong chromatic continuity between the interior and exterior, between home and nature, leaving the finishes to elegantly differentiate your perception of the surfaces. In fact, the Satin finish is unique of its kind because it is so close to being perceived as a natural element, a perfect balance between its consistency and its velvety touch that makes Lapitec® a “warm” material. Moreover, the Vesuvio finish ensures that it is safe to use for flooring, thanks to its likeness to flamed granite, making its surface less slippery.

A contemporary reinterpretation of what was already there  

The original villa, which is made up of two distinct residential units built in the 70's on an approximately 5,000 sq m lot, originally stood in a large garden that stretched along the natural slope of the hill, completely open to the sea view and surrounding vegetation. The building has been completely renovated, keeping only the supporting structure and expanding it with a new design. The villa was rethought, seeking harmony among the clean and sharp lines of the existing architecture and the soft lines of the natural conformation of the land and rocks. The goal was to use the great chromatic homogeneity that Lapitec® offers to create as much continuity as possible between the inside and outside spaces. The final stunning effect “hides” the design and technical solutions made possible by the quality and workability of the full body sintered stone. For the flooring, for example, a 150 cm by 75 cm base module was chosen, ensuring optimal use of the Lapitec® slabs. Each individual piece was adapted to the size of each inside room and each outside environment, giving a precise design. Single floor-to-ceiling slabs, 250 cm high, were used for the walls.

Earth and water: natural elements for living and inhabiting

The pool, designed at the main front of the house to create scenery between the sky and the sea, has a fluid but geometric and rational design, which covers 230 sq m. The Lapitec® cladding and walkways enhance the design of the stretch of water, creating a visually stunning area. This is primarily thanks to the gentle and Mediterranean shade of Bianco Crema, which fits in perfectly with the colours of the landscape. The large slabs have been shaped and bonded to each other to create an effect of great material continuity, which, together with the infinity border, creates an optical horizon that extends to meet the sea. The outside walkway and the whole area in front of the villa reflect the chromatic delicacy of the Bianco Crema, which has been toned down with the slightly more textured Vesuvio finish. The result is an outside environment that expresses intrinsic naturalness. The sintered stone underlines and highlights an architecture that has a strong link with the context: a place that welcomes and hosts, offering peace and inspiration. Just like nature. Just like a family home.