Chalet Whymper House

Chevallier Architectes saved a near abandoned house and optimized it for 21st century living with a modern addition located on the boundary of protected wilderness in Chamonix, France.

  • Year 2016
  • Location Chamonix, France,
  • Type House,
  • Chevallier Architectes took on this project when it was on the verge of being abandoned. There were many constraints, but the Chevallier Architectes team studied the file and proposed solutions that would make it possible to successfully complete the construction and optimization of the space.

    The site is very close to the boundary of a protected wilderness, making the building’s orientation and structure key constraints for the team to study and solve. Working in the heart of a large and unavoidable green space, we were able to give the cottage its proper place, including a spectacular view of three iconic peaks, the two Drus and the Aiguille Verte. The building’s main structure features a classic design, in sharp contrast with its modern addition, which is characterized by generous windows and impressive volumes.

    Materials and Spatial Organization
    The materials were chosen and sourced through careful research. For example, the many wood construction elements were recycled, requiring significant colorimetry work to ensure suitably consistent tones.

    The mezzanine, suspended above the lounge, is an example of a solution implemented to fulfill one of the owner’s desires – without compromising the view of the Aiguilles de Chamonix mountains. In the same spirit, the architect wanted it to be possible to see the Aiguille Verte and the Drus from the kitchen, or even from the swimming pool in the basement. Accordingly, one of the kitchen walls is a glass panel facing the Whymper Couloir, while the pool features a window well affording a view of the spectacular scenery. The stone sub-basement supports the cottage and unifies its volumes.

    The building is equipped with the latest technology, including highly advanced home automation systems, integrated into the project from the very beginning.

    DesignChevallier Architectes
    Photography: Solène Renaud