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Studio Jayga completes vaulted house extension in Essex

The ground floor of this 1930s semi-detached property in Loughton, Essex has been completely reconfigured, including the addition of a new kitchen extension. The brief provided for an open-plan living space with a strong link to the 90 m long garden.

Originally consisting of three spaces towards the rear of the house, including a narrow dated kitchen, a windowless living room and a 1980s extension serving as a dining room, the ground floor was single-storey, raised almost a meter above the garden.

Another imposing outbuilding stood near the house, obscuring the view of the garden and reducing natural daylight.

Studio Jayga proposed to demolish the outbuilding and reconfigure the three rear spaces with a rear extension to create a split-level design connected by internal steps, removing the need for steps down to the garden.

A pair of arched metal gates provide a visual connection to the garden without a change in level. A linear skylight sits between the existing house and the new extension, connecting the two internal spaces and bringing light to the center of the house.

The bespoke kitchen units and kitchen island were also designed by Studio Jayga to echo the soft curves of the arched doors and curved glass box. The elliptical island is wrapped in curved fluting and finished with a colorful terrazzo countertop. A natural palette of tones has been used throughout to complement the colors of the garden.

The outer shell of the extension is clad in wood charred on site using the Japanese shou-sugi-ban technique.

Architect’s view

The tilting frameless glass box was designed as a unique curved window seat. It is cantilevered and offers an uninterrupted view of the garden and towards the sky. It’s a great place to sit all year round and also allows natural light to flood the dining table below.

It was one of the main special features of the project and one of the most difficult elements of the construction. Building during the pandemic was inherently very tricky, with shortages of building materials and soaring costs. We had a lot of problems with the glass supply and the delays were out of control. We had an excellent team of contractors who worked on these issues and adapted the typical sequence of work to ensure the project was completed on time.

The nnU house was named based on the geometric shapes of the two arched doorways (“nn”) and the tilting glass box (“U”) when viewing the house from the garden.
Abul Mahdi, Director, Studio Jayga Architects

The customer’s point of view

We named Studio Jayga Architects following a series of interviews we had with several local architects and Mahdi, the director, simply stood out from his peers. Mahdi’s extremely extensive knowledge of incredible architecture, cutting-edge materials and myriad business contacts within the industry really opened our eyes to the uniqueness and luxury we could bring into our home.

In particular, Mahdi delivered a design that was chosen from a select few nationwide to be featured on TV as one of the most Extraordinary extensions. Its use of arches, a split-level living space that flows into our 300ft garden, a full-width 5m skylight and a custom curved window – with incredible detailing – really set our home apart.

Mahdi acted as lead project manager throughout construction, and his meticulous and hands-on approach allowed us, as clients, to simply watch his design and our home come to life. Specifically, the project was delivered on time and well within budget, which for such a custom design is truly remarkable. We look forward to working together again in the future.
Humza Malik and Pari Jeelani

Project data

Start on site May 2021
Completion October 2021
Gross interior floor area 195m²
Gross floor area (internal + external) 1,695m²
Form of contract Traditional
Building cost £250,000
Construction cost per m2 £1,900 (excluding fixtures, fittings and furniture)
Architect Studio Jayga Architects
Executive Architect Abul Mahdi
Customer Humza Malik and Pari Jeelani
Landscaping Studio Jayga Architects
Project Manager Abul Mahdi
lead designer Studio Jayga Architects
Certified building inspector building inspectors
Main contractor Capital houses
CAD software used Vector works