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Guernsey Architects, The Drawing Room, was commissioned to design an exceptional luxurious coastal home, demolishing the upper floor and roof, whilst retaining the lower floor foundations. A complete reconfiguration and remodelling of the space were essential in order to achieve the right flow of layout, connecting the occupants to their living spaces with seamless transitions to the abundant outdoor space.

At the beginning of the design phase, the team identified structural glazing selection as imperative to the success of the newly renovated prestigious home. The challenge was to maximise the panoramic views without affecting the performance of the building. The glazing specification from the architects included a wide range of architectural glazing including our large vertical sliding sash windows to the main rear facing bedrooms as well as bespoke structural glazing throughout.  

The exposed hilltop position overlooking the sea meant that both wind loading and thermal insulation would be key considerations in order to conform with performance targets of the Guernsey home renovation as well as achieving the optimum U values.  

Despite the topographic site challenges, the home would be featuring our vertical sliding sash windows in key locations on the rear elevation. The inclusion of these large vertically sliding sash windows would embrace all the natural elements and frame stunning panoramic vistas without compromise. 

As well as the performance, size and weight of the glass, the added architectural glazing challenge for this marine environment project was the consideration of frames. Pre-anodised aluminium framing would be required to withstand the harsh salty environment which can cause untreated metal frames to corrode. 

Entering through the private gates at the front of the house, you are instantly greeted by an impressive 3.2m wide Apertio solid entrance pivoting front door encased in our flagship Invisio oversized gable shaped glazing. Once inside the grandiose reception, your eyes are drawn to the oversized glass wall with gable end design out to the most astounding coastal views.  Either side of the elevated glass wall are our slim framed sliding doors linking to a bedroom on one side and a communal dining space on the other. These high performance floor to ceiling doors add simple functionality to the indoor space whilst maintaining the flow of light and connection to the outdoors.  

IQ supplied all the internal glazing using Bauhaus style steel systems.  These internal steel windows and doors bring in swathes of natural light and are designed to separate the indoors and outdoors, all of which are thermally broken; imperative for maintaining temperature and eliminating condensation and mould. 

The home also features our high performance casement doors with slim frame profiles throughout, designed to endure the harshest of environments. 

The vertical sliding sash windows themselves measured 4.9m wide and spanned from wall to wall in the bedrooms. This provided each rear facing bedroom with a panoramic view of the sea paired with ventilation whilst maintaining a frameless surrounding interface with a minimal 21mm frame across the centre of the window. The top pane of the vertical sliding sash window slides down when required, opening the full width of the bedroom wall to create a alternative twist on the Juliet balcony.   

The master bedroom and guest suite on the ground floor boast awe-inspiring gravity-defying large vertical sash windows fulfilling today’s architectural demand for maximum light and interaction with the outside thanks to the high levels of thermal insulation, solar protection and transparency.  This sliding window system creates a double height space using a hidden pulley-controlled counterweights system to move the large panes of glass up and down. Once opened, the lower section remains fixed and in place forming part of the balustrade. The horizontal frame which supports both panes of glass is only a remarkable 21mm wide achieving uninterrupted views with slim sightlines that lead to the beautiful indoors, which is exactly the desired effect. 

IQ worked closely with Guernsey builders, JW Rihoy to design the steel structured frames to support the oversized glazing and ensure that logistics planning was pin precision for this coastal house nestled in the exclusive Fort George enclave. 

The result: 

Each room within the home has been designed to make the best of every viewpoint from the ornately landscaped stepped gardens, to the moorings and out to the sea.  

The extensive structural glazing incorporated within this coastal project achieves high thermal performance without compromising on the aesthetically stunning glazed walls, which capture the vistas like a work of art.