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Northern Charm: An All-Wood Contemporary Home by Appareil Architecture

Rapides Residence, Tremblant, CA / Appareil Architecture

Nestled along the Diable River in Tremblant, Canada, the Résidence des Rapides is a masterpiece crafted by Appareil Architecture. While its presence may be discreet from the street, this two-story residence gracefully unveils itself at the rear, showcasing breathtaking vistas of the Laurentians and the tranquil river flowing in its backyard.

Rapides Residence, Tremblant, CA / Appareil Architecture

With two distinct facades, one bashful and timid overlooking Chemin Duplessis, and the other opening onto the back, showcasing the beauty of the landscape. The house at the garden level is in direct contact with the river, while the high-ceilinged ground-floor gallery provides a breathtaking view of the winding waterway, perfect for contemplation.

Despite being entirely clad in wood, the Résidence des Rapides stands out from the typical chalets in the region, showcasing bold contemporary architecture that highlights the beauty of the material. Marc-Olivier Champagne-Thomas, Associate Architect at Appareil, explains, “Beyond covering the surfaces with wood, we wanted to work with this noble material in all its diversity, using its structural properties for the framework, playing with its nuances to create a unique exterior language, and diffusing its warmth in every nook and cranny of the house.”

Rapides Residence, Tremblant, CA / Appareil Architecture

Wood wraps around the interior, from the floors to the walls and more, exuding its natural beauty. Not only is it visually appealing, but it also serves a practical purpose. The bedroom and living room are separated by a wall that cleverly incorporates a niche for an office space, illuminated by gentle sunlight streaming in through the window.

Rapides Residence, Tremblant, CA / Appareil Architecture

The design seamlessly integrates furniture throughout, from the kitchen to the foyer, creating a cohesive look. Architect Kim Pariseau explains, “We aimed to treat buildings like furniture, drawing inspiration from our Piloti bench with its exposed joints and minimal hardware.The Résidence des Rapides showcases a unified language through its solid wood structure, blurring the lines between object and architecture.”

Rapides Residence, Tremblant, CA / Appareil Architecture

The roof plays a significant role in the project, featuring a single-slope design and overhanging eaves that add character. Extending up to 8 feet in certain areas, the roof creates sheltered galleries around the house, leading to the front entrances and back gallery. Indoors, the roof’s impact is evident on the ground floor.

Rapides Residence, Tremblant, CA / Appareil Architecture

Outdoors, a sunken spa beneath the terrace offers a serene spot to unwind while enjoying a view of the river. Embracing the beauty of wood, the Résidence des Rapides seamlessly blends modern aesthetics with Nordic influences. By utilizing traditional construction methods, the project successfully marries architecture and design, resulting in spaces that evoke a sense of awe and appreciation for the natural surroundings.

Image courtesy of Felix Michaud