This new urban house in Jakarta, by San Francisco based design office Id-ea, is set in one of the city’s quiet residential pockets; yet it is breaking the neighbourhood’s architectural norm with an intricate internal arrangement and clean modern lines.

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The white and sculptural Interflow House was designed in a 12x30m city plot for a young couple ready to start a family. Instead of sacrificing the ground level for parking space and clearly separating functions vertically as the area’s houses typically do (first floor for services, first for common areas, and bedrooms at the top), Id-ea principle Elsye Alam chose a different path in this latest residential commission in her home country of Indonesia.

By placing the garage on the semi-detached house’s ground floor but with a side, instead of front, entrance, the architect freed up a wide corridor that can connect visually front and back. This move also allows for a ground level garden area. A sheltered exterior staircase leads up to the common areas that overlook the parking space. The minimal interior spans three main floors and was created as fluid and open-plan as possible. Its interlocking sub-levels mean that views through the house and contact between floors can be easily achieved.

The first floor contains kitchen, dining and service areas; the second floor comprises the children’s bedrooms, a living room and play area; and the third floor hosts the couple’s master bedroom with its en-suite bathroom, walk-in wardrobe and private balcony. Green spaces, internal voids, terraces, bridges and a reflecting pool all contribute to an extremely dynamic internal environment that encourages connections between levels. At the same time, clever design means that privacy can be maintained if required.

With Interflow House, Alam and her team have created a welcoming family home that remains simultaneously transparent and solid, open and private. At the same time, the south-facing house’s many openings and outdoors areas help decrease its indoor temperature, maintaining a pleasant atmosphere.