Architect PKdM Arkitektar
Team Pálmar Kristmundsson; Fernando de Mendonça; Dagni Wiest; María Stefánsdóttir; Sóley Brynjarsdóttir
Consultants Conis Verkfræðiráðgjöf; Verkhönnun
Photographer Rafael Pinho; Helge Garke
Completion Year 2009
Location Selfoss – Iceland
Built Area 256 m2 (2.760 sq ft)
Bedrooms 4

Plans / Sections / Elevations

Árborg House

From the architects:
The house in Árborg lies two hours to the east of Reykjavík, on the banks of Hvítá in the spectacular landscape of Iceland. The site is a moss-covered hill with a view over a quiet bend in the glacier-formed river. In the spring, the river carries straggling icebergs from the glacier towards the sea some 100 km away.

The approach to the vacation house is from the top of the hill. The building is organized as a sequence of events: from the entrance porch through the closed courtyard into the living space and at last, out onto the terrace.

Living, dining, kitchen, and master bedroom are all arranged in one continuous room. This permits panoramic views of the river and the distant mountains to the west. The exterior is a broken surface of light grey, fair-faced concrete. The gravel from the riverbed is blended into the concrete, and is revealed in the broken surface. It harmonizes the outside walls with the moss of the surrounding landscape.

Leftover moss from the footprint of the house covers the roof. It was kept aside and regularly nursed during the building process, before being reinstalled on the roof. Doors and terraces are clad with teak boards that will gradually weather to a colour grade to match the seasonal moss and the broken concrete surface. Fair-faced concrete walls through out the entire interior are matched with untreated teak boards on floors and ceilings.

Selected pebbles from the nearby riverbed cover the bottom of the infinity pool. The pool projects out in front of the terrace, acting as a non-obstructive railing, complementing the view of the river.

PKdM Arkitektar

Share this project

Request more information

Your inquiry will be forwarded to the architects.