It is in the evening that the full splendour of the Nico van der Meulen designed Mooikloof Heights residence, situated east of Tshwane in Gauteng, comes to life.
The spectacularly designed residence, perched on a 15 000m² north-sloping site, is the manifestation of architectural magnum opus.
As the driveway curves around the house to the entrance on the south side, a transparent “canyon” opens, with views through the house to the hills, miles away. The rust colour is picked up by the gabion retaining walls that create a carport to the south of the home, while “Weathered”, a steel sculpture by Regardt van der Meulen, welcomes you at the front door.
Indoor/outdoor and open plan living was the departure point in the design of this mansion. Even the kitchen opens up totally to the pool, patio and jacuzzi.
Symphony of textures
On entering the double-volume entrance hall, the view is across two water features. The first one is part of the atrium at the core of the house and the other is a large reflecting pond in the garden that doubles as a rainwater collection tank. Internally ribbed brass cladding is introduced to the walls and ceilings, while several paintings by Santa van der Meulen complement the interiors.
The exposed steel beams, glass and stone cladding create a symphony of textures, combined with rusting steel walls and screed floors. The staircase cantilevers out of a massive stone wall with double-storey glass to the west, protected from the sun by steel louvres and an indigenous tree.
A few steps down, one is presented with a choice of either the formal lounge or the informal family and dining room flowing out onto the lanai, while the open-plan kitchen and breakfast room are positioned next to the jacuzzi. Another sculpture by Regardt van der Meulen sits on a perch above the family room, staring across the double-volume space.
Angle for optimum views
The lanai is a vast space suited to the Highveld lifestyle, incorporating a bar/barbeque, dining area and lounge, adjacent to the jacuzzi and pool.
The view from the house to the north is breath-taking, covering the valley down to the foot of the hill where Mooikloof Equestrian Estate is situated, and across the extensive garden and the large reflecting pond.
On the opposite side of the hall is access to the garages (the other four garages have direct access to the kitchen area), a lift that connects the basement floor and first floor, and an executive study leading onto a massive roof garden over the guest wing. A large home theatre is situated to the south of the family room.
The guest wing can be reached via the lift or another cantilevered staircase and comprises three suites with a lounge area, all leading onto the lower garden.
Open-plan living with a difference
At the top of the main staircase is the pyjama lounge, where one bridge runs across the double-volume family room to the main suite. The other bridge runs across the double-volume hall leading to two children’s suites, while a third suite and the gym are situated to the south of the bridge leading to the main suite. This third child’s suite has an internal balcony, with the facing wall painted with a whimsical map of the world.
The main suite is a private sanctuary, flooded with north and east sun, and a fabulous dressing room and bathroom leading onto large balconies.
The home was designed by Nico and Werner van der Meulen of Nico van der Meulen Architects, with interiors by their interior design company, M Square Lifestyle Design, and furniture and accessories supplied by M Square Lifestyle Necessities.
For more information, visit www.nicovdmeulen.com.
Images by: David Ross
View the VTour for Mooikloof Heights now: https://my.matterport.com/show/?m=ChPHjLYWUuf
For more projects like these, subscribe to our free magazine on https://www.freemagazines.co.za/
Sign up for our newsletter: https://www.buildinganddecor.co.za/ or join other discussions on http://www.facebook.com/buildinganddecor, http://www.twitter.com/buildingdecor and https://www.linkedin.com/showcase/10172797/