At first glance, Sliding House by dRMM founder Alex de Rijke looks like an oversized red barn. But this radical Suffolk property has a super secret – its roof slides off to create open-air living rooms and sun-drenched spaces.
Comprising three separate structures – the main house, garage and guest annexe – the 2009 Huntingfield property has won a slew of awards, including RIBA’s ‘Best New Build’ accolade. It featured on an episode of Grand Designs for its innovative, space-busting design, which features a static glass and metal framework that is ‘sheathed’ by the mechanised roof.
This 50-ton, motor-driven structure slides on 28-metre-long tracks to expose or cover areas of the home to maximise light flow and adapt to the seasons. During summer, the canopy shades an al fresco dining terrace while it adds extra insulation during winter, achieving an EPC ‘A’ rating for its energy efficiency and eco credentials.
The kitchen and dining room are at the front of the kinetic house, peering across 3.5 acres of gardens, meadows and orchards through floor-to-ceiling glass. A lofty sitting room perches on a mezzanine above; its steel frame is painted bright red to echo the garage exterior, with views of rolling meadows from this elevated vantage point.
A bedroom and study are on the opposite side of the ground floor, while the ‘central rooms’ are more intimate in scale and are influenced by Charles Rennie Mackintosh’s ‘House for an Art Lover.’ More enclosed, they include a snug and the house’s ‘services’ – a back kitchen, utility room and shower.
The primary bedroom hides within the roof of the A-frame prefab, while a third bedroom is housed in the guest annexe, which doubles as an office or studio.
The Modern House is listing the RIBA-award-winning Suffolk property for £1m.