This month we were delighted to see our Cascina project across a wide range of European press. Publications Enki and Abitare published wider spreads of the project in print, whilst digital platforms such as DezeenDivisare, Architecture Today and Architects Journal posted online pieces.

Cascina is the refurbishment of a 200-year-old historic farmstead complex into a home and studio, located in the Piedmont region of Italy. The renovation is indicative of our approach in retaining original structures whilst implementing sustainable methods of contemporary intervention. The outcome is an exquisitely restored, former agricultural building that has a new-found domestic character to appreciate the sweeping vistas of vineyards that blanket the valley below.

The project had sustainable strategies at the forefront of ambition, with the scheme reusing much of the original fabric including stone walls, roof tiling and the gnarled, unsawn timber roof skeleton. Renewable energy is supplied through a ground source heat pump and solar panels on the pitched roof.

Bringing the building back to its former agrarian appearance and improving its thermal envelope was imperative, with a granular render applied to external walls, revealing faces of brick intermittently throughout their surface. The warm texture of the hand-crafted plaster continues this tactile language internally, and alongside Luserna stone, timber, and brick, articulates a robust material palette throughout the house. Cocciopesto flooring inventively binds old and new, with a mix of lime and sand interspersed with crushed fragments of terracotta tiles from the site, resulting in a polished finish aware of its context. Locally sourced chestnut was implemented for the joinery; a beautiful low-carbon material which binds all the elements of the building inextricably into its landscape.

The upper floors were rearranged around a stepped double level hallway to accommodate a more generous ceiling height in the entrance and living spaces. The space bridging the barn and farmhouse seemingly hasn’t changed appearance in two centuries, treated as a continuation of the brick wall and closed at both ends by glazed doors. Hidden behind a brick screen ‘gelosia’ is a passage that wends its way to the upper floor hayloft, a light filled studio with vistas overlooking treetops and the Alps. The spa occupies the former barn basement, hidden discreetly behind a wall of umber timber, with original brick vaults levitating above.

Cascina was beautifully captured by Francesca Iovene.