The Runkelsteiner

The Runkelsteiner

Bolzano, Italy

White frames artfully shaping the architectural layers of the building

Nestled amid the historic town of Bolzano, Italy, The Runkelsteiner stands tall as an delicate apartment building on a tranquil property, enveloped by majestic pine trees and the rich tapestry of historic architecture.  The building boasts three generously appointed full-floor units, each adorned with expansive terraces that offer breathtaking vistas of the majestic mountains beyond.

With a predominantly transparent building shell, the interiors are bathed in a profusion of natural light, while the construction itself gracefully treads upon the environment with a gentle and unobtrusive touch.  The Eastern, Southern, and Western facades of the structure exude a blend of slender white frames and vertical aluminum louvers, evoking a harmonious symphony of contemporary design and timeless elegance.

A seamless floor-to-ceiling glass envelope effortlessly blurring the boundaries between indoor and outdoor spaces

For each apartment, oak planks have been selected for the interior floors and ipe wood decking for all the terraces. The bathrooms are cladded with sandblasted white limestone rectangular tiles of different sizes,  and the vanities are designed with a dark marble top and natural oak drawers. Each unit is equipped with a black steel fireplace integrated in the living area millwork system.

The white frames define the different functions of the interior layout and create independent terraces that appear as the continuity of the interior spaces. The aluminum louvers, are placed strategically in order to provide some privacy from the neighboring buildings. 

The glass shell is designed with a thermally broken steel profile system to keep the door frames slimmer, and the large sliding glass door on the South terrace is motorized for a more comfortable and simple use.  Both the door and the sliding door frames have been covered by glass on the outer face, and they result flush with the fixed glass on the sides.  The large fixed glass panes are completely inserted on the floor, ceiling and vertical sides, to allow the maximum sense of a continuous space.

The building reaches the highest level of energy performance certification due to the triple glazing of the façades, thick insulation on the North elevation, photovoltaic and solar panels installed on the roof, as well as a fresh air ventilation system in each unit.  Calculations and shadow analysis have been taken into consideration during the design phase, so that the sun could not reach the interiors during the warmer summer months and overheat the apartments.

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