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Ekkist: Making a House, a Home

The Ori House
The Ori House
Could humans live in flying homes 100 years' time?
The Ori House
Hour Glass Project

Can your home really improve your wellbeing? Let’s ask the experts.

Ekkist is leading a wellness movement by designing buildings that contribute to our overall quality of life.

 

Ekkist was originally founded to bridge the gap in the market for beautifully designed, sustainable buildings that combine health and well-being with a strong design aesthetic. An Ekkist home focuses on simplicity and calm, muted colours with lots of natural light and air-purifying indoor plants, known to aid concentration and reduce stress.

 

Founded by Olga Turner and Jonathan Baker, the Guildford-based business offers a complete design service, a building blueprint with built-in adaptation options and a bespoke approach to work with individuals, architects and project teams.

 

Due to its growing success, Ekkist has launched a B2B service, Ekkist Advisory, for developers wanting to apply design for well-being principles.

 

‘What defines an Ekkist build?’, we asked Olga:

 “An Ekkist build is a building designed around the long-term health and well-being of its inhabitants and users, built to high environmental and well-being standards.”

Jonathan added, “For us, architecture for well-being is about designing for our collective comfort, beauty, resilience, but most importantly, our health.”

 

Speaking to The Modern House, Jonathan described the concept of modern living as “timelessness, simplicity and elegant design.” Olga added, “For me, modern living is about understanding how our buildings affect us both physically and mentally and living in a way which allows us to thrive in the environments that we curate around ourselves.”

“It is about being selective with the materials that we use, the objects that we surround ourselves with and how we lay out our space for social interaction.”

 

Would your dream home be connected or off-grid? And what if you could have both?

Highflyers, Ekkist and Studio McLeod, won second place in the Dezeen x MINI Living Future Urban Home Competition, which called for proposals for how people could live in 100 years’ time.

Inspired by our nomadic heritage, The Hour Glass project is a vision of small houses equipped with hot air balloons, allowing its residents to move between urban and rural environments. 

 

In a fast-growing and contemporary society, many seek to escape, travel, refresh and connect with nature. This ideology would enable inhabitants to reconnect as well as when chosen, remain socially and digitally connected.

 

The impressive project faced climate challenges by proposing LED skin for both the interior and exterior walls, as well as a camouflage disguise and the ability to change appearance on demand. The forward-thinking initiative would allow people to choose where to wake up each day – a world where routine is no longer prioritised above living. 

Meet the Ori House

An Ekkist Blueprint is an outline building typology, bespoke to clients’ individual needs. The concept is designed for use by self-builders and developers seeking a core design as a basis for personalisation.

 

Working alongside their award-winning partner architectural practice, Studio McLeod, the latest development is the UK’s first self-built home, The Ori House, that enhances your health by adopting all of Ekkist’s core principles, from air and water filtration to lighting and material.

 

Featured in the Financial Times, Evening Standard and Grand Designs Magazine, the stunning establishment features four en-suite double bedrooms, flexible open-plan living space and options for extensions and alterations, designed to meet your needs.

 

The building ensures only the purest, non-toxic materials are used to make your home, allowing you to breathe the freshest air and drink the cleanest water, showcasing the latest in wellbeing technology, based on the new WELL Building Standard guidelines.

 

Support from Start Up Loans

Ekkist got in touch with Let’s Do Business Start Up to secure funding for marketing and initial start-up costs. Richard Bearman, Managing Director at Start Up Loans, said: “Start Up Loans exists to help aspiring businesses owners and early-stage businesses to get access to the finance and support they need to thrive and so I’m delighted that Start Up Loans has been able to support Olga and Jonathan and play a part in the success of Ekkist.”

 

Olga Turner said, “We are delighted with the support that we have received from Let’s Do Business Group. This has enabled us to grow as a business and to invest our future as a company. This year we were named in Forbes’ 30 under 30 list as one of Europe’s most innovative companies, which is a testament that funding and support such as this is having a positive impact on UK innovation”

 

Building blocks for the future

With aims to sustainably deliver the next generation of building design, Ekkist imagines the future as continuing to encourage others to adopt principles of wellness and biophilic design and to include other use classes outside of residential, including hotels, offices and restaurants.

Here’s to hoping we’ll find the keys to a flying house in our stocking this year!