A young family wanted to embrace the beautiful character of a typical Maltese home in the heart of Zejtun whilst making it functional for them and their lifestyle. As with any other antique building, for this project, the studio Daaa Haus not only made sure to work closely with the authorities to preserve the structure and historical aesthetic appeal, but throughout the whole process, they made sure to be present on-site monitoring and adapting the plans accordingly. An in-depth on the ground study with the local neighbourhood was carried out which gave us a better insight about the use and previous ownership of the property. This allowed them to appreciate even further its history and all its features; those already pointed out by the authorities and not. Wherever possible they kept old features in place even if not required. Whilst keeping and respecting the integrity of the existing building Daaa Haus wanted to create a clear visual separation between the old and new; thus creating a new kind of old.
When possible and available, the extension of the house was built using recovered old stone from the site. The house today is a modernized character home for a young family which includes a large central courtyard illuminating all the rooms and connections through a huge retractable skylight, a mature back garden with pool, a mill room housing a typical cosy dining and living room, a bright kitchen overlooking the back garden, a separate family room, 3 bedrooms, a large walk-in, and a number of bathrooms.
Renovating a heritage home can be a challenging process to navigate through, but once the historic and cultural significance of the building is identified one can easily establish with the authorities what is worthy of preserving and therefore work within a framework. It was imperative to maintain as many historic features as possible. This could be appreciated in features such as the old supporting ‘hnejja’, reminiscent of the past which has been kept, freestanding feature as the entrance to the open new mixed material staircase. Daaa Haus got also creative with other features such as the old wooden apertures which have been renovated and reused as table tops and mirror frames.