Mario House

Como Lake


Our clients, residents of Milan, wanted a weekend home—one that supported their athletic lifestyle—and had found a house that, though not a historic building, needed a modernistic makeover (including the swimming pool they had their hearts set on).


With clients who did not bring significant financial resources to the table, we had to create work that we could be proud of while understanding what could be realistically financed. The building was structurally sound … but … bland.


Using the existing external walls as a palette, we clad them with sleek, aluminum paneling that’s part of a high-performance ventilated facade system that includes a thermal-acoustic coating. This not only creates a contemporary look, but a class-A energy rating. We opened up the interior with new and expanded windows and glass doors that lead to the garden and new pool—all part of transforming a staid interior into vibrant and airy living spaces demarcated by transparencies, solids, and voids. Flourishes include a custom-designed 8+ meter bookcase (which serves as a filter passage to the bedrooms) and “stylistic hybridization” that revisits elements from the era the original home was built with contemporary design and a new generation of materials.

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“Movement only has a meaning if you have a home to go back to.”

– Pico Iyer

Next Project

The new project completely redefines the design and organisation of the building, creating a strong relationship between the internal spaces of the house and the external areas of the garden. This relationship takes place directly, on the lower floor, through the large openings that connect with the pool area, while on the first floor the relationship is mainly visual. The large window of the living room frames the garden and the landscape, as well as the external living space of the terrace with sunshades is a “lookout” over the garden.

The building changes its “dress” and wears a high-performance ventilated facade system with aluminium panels and a thermal-acoustic coat. These solutions, together with the latest generation technology systems, allow the building to access energy class A.

The internal organization is characterized by the spatial fluidity between the living and kitchen areas, free, airy and full of light, with wide views that open towards the garden and the pool. The connection between this main space and the more private areas of the house is made through a separation space made up of transparencies, solids and voids obtained through a custom-designed furniture.

The interior design is characterized by the “stylistic hybridization” focused on the revisiting of traditional elements through a contemporary design and the use of new generation materials. Examples of this are the fabrics in metal yarn and the liquid brass finishes, used for the furnishings of the living area on the first floor, as well as the combination of Canaletto walnut and steel with a mirror finish of the furniture and the bookcase of the living room on the ground floor.

Inside the space has been completely emptied and freed, on the second floor there is a large open space area with kitchen, dining area and living room overlooking the pool. We also designed a large bookcase more than 8 meters long that serves to create and filter the passage to the bedroom area. On the ground floor we have obtained an additional accommodation for guests. The pool is of the semi-overflow type and is flanked by a large area paved with stone and wood where you can put an outdoor living area during the summer.