House Schmitten by Steiner Architecture in Vienna, Austria

Project: House Schmitten
Architects: Steiner Architecture
Vienna, Austria
Area: 1.291 sf
Year: 2023
Photographs by:
Florian Holzherr

House Schmitten by Steiner Architecture

This family chalet in Zell am See stands out with its audacious use of RAL 3016 color applied to the wooden boards, giving the Alpine timber cladding a cheeky and vibrant appearance. The annex, attaching to an old hotel, is a striking contrast, featuring a double height and ample glass windows that provide stunning mountain views. The ground floor showcases a living room and dining area with polished concrete walls and the flexibility of roller shades for privacy. The mezzanine offers a home office, while the bedrooms, bathrooms, and kitchen are located in the hotel building, which the family manages.

Barn red? Burnt umber? Redwood? Indian red? Smoked salmon? Windsor tan? Chestnut? Marron? It’s technically RAL 3016, and when applied on wooden boards it turns this family chalet in Zell am See into a kinky incarnation of Alpine timber cladding, a cheeky expression of folk.

But from the old hotel to which the chalet attaches like an appendix, the architecture draws no more. Other than the wooded exterior, the new annex is a compositional non sequitur – see the modified Diocletian window in the back that points to foreign styles. It is a surprise in a country where merely submitting a flat roof means looking for trouble.

Its double height speaks of the vertical dimension, which is usually abandoned in local architecture in favor of the much esteemed horizontal. From the inside, all wants for views of mountains are supplied profusely by outsize glass sheets on three of its sides, just short of being full curtain walls. On their wooden frames, RAL 3016 has been applied with different levels of saturation to lend variety – an exercise in subtlety in spite of the audacity of their redness.

The ground floor houses the family’s living room and dining room, where massive polished concrete walls act as a counterpoint to the much diaphanous façade. Roller shades can be drawn over the entire height of the glass panes should further privacy be required, resulting in a distinctly different appearance from the outside.

Above, a curve in the mezzanine permits a small home office and converses with the half-moon of the inverted Diocletian window. There’s another half-circle in the section of the staircase’s pillar, white and thin. Bedrooms, bathrooms, and kitchen remain on the body of the hotel, now rendered the primary host, and which this very family runs.

Steiner Architecture


Tags: Austria, contemporary, interior, modern, Steiner Architecture, Vienna

Author: Fidan Jovanov


A young enthusiast with a passion for home decor and architecture, I love writing articles that inspire and guide readers in transforming their spaces into stylish, functional, and beautiful environments.


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