Home automation travels by gondola.
A pair of talented professionals: he is an architect and she is an interior designer; an old Venetian fondaco that once served as a warehouse for building materials and is now a fine house situated in the heart of Venice. We are in the student district where the traditions remain unchanged; this part of Venice is largely unknown to fleeting tourists, where locals live out their daily lives in this city of multitudinous and incomparable facets. Crossing the first entrance brings silence and peace, with the muffled sound of human voices and activities left outside of this 15th century building, leaving Venice in awaiting behind the protection of a sturdy door.
This home is a perfect blend of work, home life, culture and passion: the love of travel, of design, of a profession that allows one, as in this case, to draft the rebirth of a location. It is a house to be admired and observed, to discover the furnishings unearthed in antique markets around the world or prestigious artefacts like old marble friezes and the outline of an Istrian stone stairway that decorates a corner of the ceiling. Before the restructuring, the main room was used for transportation of materials which were loaded through a chute onto barges waiting on the water outside. Today, the centre of the room accommodates the famous Doge table designed by Carlo Scarpa and from the wide bay window overlooking the canal you can see skilled gondoliers guiding young lovers or tourists in a discovery tour of this most romantic city.
White and gold are the predominant colours that alternate in a beautifully successful dialogue between the essential modernity of the first and the classic grandeur of the second. A harmonious blend of old and new, aesthetics and functionality, in which the By-me home automation system by Vimar was chosen as the finishing touch on a house that almost resembles a museum. The owners wanted the high technology but ease of use of Vimar to provide automation and control of the home with a few simple gestures, but which simultaneously was able to combine with the style of the house.
The By-me control units are installed in different parts of the house and see to the demands of everyday family life: to manage the operation of appliances and monitor electrical loads; to show video images of anyone at the front door, or to activate and deactivate the alarm system. The programming of different scenarios bespeak refined rituals and habits, with well thought out elegant atmospheres and styles which reflect the residence and its inhabitants. For relaxation, while for example sipping a Bellini, the cocktail scenario activates the spotlights placed at the base of the stone columns inherited from the old warehouse, highlighting their silhouette with special chiaroscuro effects;
simultaneously, the alcove located at the west end of the room is enhanced by discreet and soft lighting that render the space warm and welcoming. Small relics occupy different parts of the walls of the house: resting on niches carved into the wall, these can be illuminated through the use of simple on/off controls or temporarily highlighted in timed lighting sequences controlled by the By-me system.
In the master bathroom home, the automation system coordinates lighting, temperature and turns on the television. On the faux leather walls, white buttons with infrared detectors receive remote commands and activate predetermined scenarios from a distance, for maximum comfort. The temperature is governed by thermostats in each room and its management can be integrated in the By-me and then coordinated with the operation of other devices, or manually adjusted with the possibility of diversifying the climate in each of the environments.
Regarding security, numerous sensors positioned in such a way as to not disturb the carefully constructed ambience monitor any foreign presence; their function, combined with the internal sirens, provides constant surveillance and guarantee an effective intrusion detection system managed with By-me.
Each of the devices designed by Vimar is framed in a gold coloured polymer plaque of the Plana series; in the studio adjacent to the living quarters, however, the home automation system is dressed in the essential design of the Plana series in candid white and provides total control: it activates and deactivates entire rooms by turning all the electrical devices on and off,decorates and accompanies the drafting, design and planning work that takes place in the five rooms with huge windows that provide copious illumination.
It is here where the quote of Le Corbusier is perfectly applicable: Architecture is the masterly, correct and magnificent play of masses brought together in light.
System design and installation: C.E.B. Costruzioni Elettriche Beccarello di Luca Beccarello (VE)
Home automation system: By-me