An Inviting Pool Annex in Beijing’s Fragrant Hill
Beijing’s Zephyr Architects have created a swimming pool annex for a swimming-enthusiast couple that recreates the tranquil feeling of dappled light moving within a natural environment.
The main consideration is to bring nature into the pool. The skylights and windows let in sunlight and reflect the passing of time during the course of a day and seasons of the year.
The dappled sunlight comes in through three sizes of window openings: 1200mm, 800mm and 400mm.
The subtle change in lighting throughout the day makes it an inviting and meditative place for relaxation, with an always changing environment.
The huge pool annex creates a new small courtyard space between it and the existing building.
The pool is sited down a boundary line that has neighbors close.
The interior wall of the pool annex thus acts as a wall, giving the courtyard privacy by shielding it from neighboring homes and streets.
On the plan you will notice that the pool room is not a rectangle. This artificially created perspective creates an illusion of a deeper interior.
Between the pool annex and the existing house is a rest area with a sauna, a skylit shower, and a lounge for sunbathing after swimming.
The fenestration is designed according to lighting and privacy needs. There are more openings in the southwest facade, facing the courtyard, and less in the east façade adjacent to neighboring home.
By creating reflections through the water and moving squares of dappled light on the wall, the sunlight continually changes and animates the space.
Even at night, the pool beckons invitingly, making sure that exercise will always be regular part of the lives of the couple, regardless of weather.