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© Ulysse Lemerise Bouchard (YUL Photo)


Project : Malbaie V Location : Cap-à-l’Aigle, La Malbaie, Québec Architects : MU Architecture Project team : Charles Côté, Jean-Sébastien Herr, Audrée Lavallée, Myriam Varay Client : Florent Moser (Les Terrasses Cap-à-l’Aigle) Contractor : Florent Moser/ Alain Rajotte Structural Engineer : I-Level Photograph : Ulysse Lemerise Bouchard (YUL Photo)


The Malbaie V residence is located in the splendid region of Cap-à-l’Aigle in the center of Charlevoix. It is a part of a distinct residential hillside development which offers spectacular views of La Malbaie, the St. Lawrence River and the surrounding mountains.

The simple and clear external drama of geometrical volumes embracing one another seems to emerge from the steep terrain. The green roof spreads over the entire dwelling that facilitate its integration into the landscape and works as an insulating layer and also helps to reduce heat built-up in summer. A wide gateway which acts as a covered entrance and carport sets on a retaining wall/storage unit that was unavoidable given the condition of the very steep terrain. Retaining walls of the lower bearing has been accomplished by shifting large round stones recovered during the construction of the street above.

The Ground floor planning from the entrance to the main room gives a sense of revelation through large continuous open plan absent of any discernible structure. A plethora of openings from east to west, the result of a perfect combination of sun path, orientation and views sought, maintains permanent natural light and optimal energy efficiency. The lower level contains four bedrooms and two full bathrooms arranged linearly following a clear axis perpendicular to the main volume above which allows a beautiful view from every room. The simplicity of the materials used, types of natural wood used for the flooring and ceiling highlights the dramatic perspective of the main corridor.

The significant contrast in the selection of coating materials maximise the strength of the link between the volumes. The upper volume is flanked with British Columbian red cedar and the lower level with dyed barn wood. The house seems to be a creation of the mountain as it rests in harmony with surrounding trees.