Holistic House

An external view of the kitchen/diner space, highlighting the triple headed pendant and the black geometric linear fixture creeping over into the living space


“It is about curating all the pieces of the puzzle, which contribute to our understanding of health and well-being through architecture, and coming up with solutions for how they can be delivered in buildings, without compromising on aesthetics or sustainability”

This article was originally featured in March’s edition of Arc Magazine. To read the full article, click here.

“The blueprint of Ori House features the clean, chic ad eco-friendly designs from Ekkist and Studio McLeod, utilising daylighting design from Cundall.

Ekkist and Studio McLeod have come together to create this collaborative architectural blueprint called The Ori House.

With health and well-being at the forefront of design for Ekkist’s architecture, six core principles are essential for the design process including; light, air, water, biosphere, atmosphere and adaptability and longevity. These principles are based on the Passivhaus principles (that ensure good levels of insulation, solar and heat sources, airtightness and air quality) and the WELL Building Standard, as well as designed with BREEAM in mind.

It presents a highly adaptable design that can be created to suit a range of different sites with options to extend and form bespoke alterations. Olga Turner, Director and Co-Founder of Ekkist explained: ‘For us, architecture for well-being is about attention to detail. It involves a holistic approach to the design process, bringing together striking, sculptural aesthetics, strong environmental values and a focus on how occupants will feel and interact within our buildings. It is about designing for comfort, beauty, resilience, and very importantly, our health and well-being.’

RIBA award winning architects Studio McLeod worked closely with Ekkist to form a design encompassing daylighting into the heart of the project. Using guidance from the WELL Building Standard and the daylight strategy by Cundall, Ekkist aimed to incorporate positively into the living environment, focussing on elements of improving the occupants’ circadian rhythm function.

It was important for the team to incorporate British-made products and use British brands throughout the project, for example Astro’s track lighting, which were both designed and engineered in the UK.

The importance of daylight in this design demanded particular attention to the room orientations, to allow maximum daylight to enter through large windows. The open plan layout with three metre high ceilings also further maximises the opportunity for natural light to fill the space.

A striking geometric lighting rail is featured in the main living areas, providing a modern answer to task lighting as well as a bespoke-designed sculptural light to illuminate the dining.

Working closely with Lucid Environments, the architectural team produced numerous visualisations of the project to see different lighting necessities throughout the day and at different points of the year, to ensure the lighting installed would work with maximum impact.

As it is still a working design that is aimed at being flexible depending on the client’s desires, these fittings are interchangeable and alternative options are provided to align the lighting with the joists if a different design is desired.

Clayworks clay plaster provides a highly reflective surface for natural light to be bounced back into the rooms. This eco-friendly method of wall coverage using clay plaster not only adds more light but also saves over one tonne of carbon dioxide.

Jonathan Baker, Director and Co-Founder of Ekkist, commented: ‘It is about curating all the pieces of the puzzle which contribute to our understanding of health and wellbeing through architecture, and coming up with solutions for how they can be delivered in buildings, without compromising on aesthetics or sustainability’.”