A new model of residential architecture in Turin
Filippo Orlando - Più Studio Architetti
Completed in Turin in February 2018 as part of a project by Filippo Orlando + Studio Architetti with Mediapolis Engineering, Bernini2 — la Villa e la Torre (the Villa and Tower) is a new 28-apartment residential complex standing on a strategic site at the corner between Piazza Bernini, the baroque street Corso Francia, and Corso Tassoni.
The project involved renovating an attractive building located in the diverse and up-market Cit Turin neighbourhood. Notably, it was the only building in Turin to have undergone an intervention by Milanese architects Mario Asnago and Claudio Vender, who after designing a series of splendid residential buildings in Milan, at the beginning of the 1950s embarked on a project to expand and modify a Liberty-style villa originally built in the early twentieth century on the edge of the city for chocolate maker Gustavo Talmone.
Given the constraints imposed by the unique shape of the site and the characteristics of the surrounding urban fabric (including the tall fifties and sixties residential buildings lining Corso Tassoni) and the desire to maintain as much of the existing architecture as possible, the architect chose to create two separate sections connected by a unifying base element which references the colours and geometries used by Asnago and Vender. The project is completed by a basement level of parking lots and an entirely re-designed garden.
The Villa retains its original features (such as the façade loggias and the pitched roof clad with fibre-cement shingles), its small scale and its air of an «urban villa» thanks to a skilful internal reorganisation. It now accommodates upper-floor apartments facing onto the renovated garden and ground-floor solutions accessed via double entrances from private gardens and equipped with indoor swimming pools and fitness areas.
At the same time, to create a visual connection with the high-rise buildings in Corso Tassoni and to fully exploit the building volume permitted by the urban masterplan, the architect chose to build a slender, innovative Tower, where a panoramic atrium provides access to 9 above-ground floors accommodating apartments of different sizes (from two to four rooms) opening onto large, deeply-recessed terraces. On the top floors, panoramic lofts look out onto the natural and urban landscape, with views that embrace the entire chain of the western Alps and encompass the city skyline dominated by the skyscraper designed by Renzo Piano as the headquarters of the Intesa San Paolo banking group.
Italian ceramic tiles are used on the ventilated façades, the exterior paving and the communal internal spaces, where together with the elegant walnut wainscoting they help to recreate vintage atmospheres. They are an important and highly distinctive element of a redevelopment project that uses a new architectural language to renovate a high-quality but outdated housing model.
Large-size tiles from Ceramiche Keope have been adopted on the façades of both the Villa and Tower. Whereas in the Villa they reference the white of the Botticino marble used by Asnago and Vender to frame the openings in their building (model Code Ivory, sizes 60×120 cm and 30×120 cm), in the Tower they have been chosen in a grey colour (model Edge Silver, 60×120 cm and 30×120 cm) and used in combination with cedar wood strips to create the dynamic, recessed façades where the hierarchy between the main and service façades has been abandoned. Ceramic slabs are also used in the communal spaces of the Tower and Villa (where they are flanked by a striking two-tone pattern of tiles from Atlas Concorde, model Marvel Half Hex Warm Lappato, size 33×48.3 cm) and on the balconies and external walkways (Point collection in colour Sand, size 45×90 cm, Cypro collection in colour Grey, size 40×120 cm and In&Out Percorsi Extra collection in colour Pietra di Barge, size 45×90 cm).
Ceramiche Keope, Code + Edge + Point + Cypro + In&Out Percorsi Extra
Code 60X120; Edge 75X150; Point 45X90; Cypro 40X120; In&Out Percorsi Extra 45X90
Code Ivory; Edge Silver; Point Sand; Cypro Grey; In&Out Percorsi Extra Pietra di Barge
Water absorpion (ISO 10545-3): ≤ 0,1 %
Resistance to deep abrasion (ISO 10545-6): ≤ 155 mm3
Stain resistance (ISO 10545-14): compliant
Frost resistance (ISO 10545-12): compliant
Thermal shock resistance (ISO 10545-9): compliant
Linear thermal expansion (ISO 10545-8): compliant