Bewboc House by Fabian Tan is a suburban terrace residence in Kuala Lumpur, malaysia, the form of which resembles a concrete barrel vault. Owned by a young family who requested for a minimal intervention, the project is an addition to an existing corner house, while the brief also included the re-purposing of the living spaces on ground level. Contrasting with the existing fabric of tropical suburban homes, the new form is intended to be simple but bold, while openings have been carefully carved out on the upper level to counter the visual heaviness of the building.
Fabian Tan has oriented the living spaces of Bewboc House parallel to the site boundary, which results in a ‘break’ between existing and new rooms. This positioning acts as a secured ventilated light well, cooling both sides naturally. The space appears continuous through the extension of the arch and exaggerated further through the materiality of the concrete finish from floor to ceiling.
To counter the heaviness of the concrete vault, fabian tan carved out openings on the upper level, whose shape creates a rhythmic play with the heavy form of the house. for example, the inverted arch window at the side of the vault is drawn as a continuous S shape when it meets the front arched opening. Walking through the upper levels, this continuity echoes throughout the spaces as lines of openings and arches meet.
A play of curves and levels characterizes the upper floor, where different areas are layered, creating a hierarchy of space. There, a study overlooks the living spaces downstairs, while a step-up, a platform corner offers room for lounging. Behind, a bedroom overlooks these spaces. The master bedroom connects through a bridge to the outermost floor section of the annex, and much to one’s surprise, an open balcony.