The three retreat houses or Poustinia (Russian word for desert) are located in a valley between Comeragh Mountains and Slievenamon, in the northern incline of the site. Each residence is orientated to capture different views over the surrounding countryside and to give a variance in sunlight as the day progresses. A circular path interconnects the Poustinia and leads to the Main House, to a network of paths that reach the shore of River Suir (in the southern boundary of the area), and to the mature woodland located to the west.
As a reflection of the environment into which the houses wish to meld, the materials chosen were those that could be found in the proximities of the site. The facade enclosure is made out of locally sourced timber cladding arranged in alternating strips of smooth sawn larch wood and rough sawn douglas fir. This enclosure is interrupted only by the windows and by a narrow open air void, clad in large glass surfaces. These finishes contrast with the minimalist interiors, for which only limestone and bespoke furniture have been used. The bold window shutters strengthen the configuration of an introverted space conducive to meditation and contemplation... [+]
Kevin Bates & Tom Maher/ Architects Bates Maher
Geogheagan Consulting (ingeniería engineering); B&E (muebles furniture)
Kieran Doran Building Contractor