Villas on the Cliff

Hvar, Island Hvar, Croatia 2020

leisure, accommodation

invited competition

Sunčani Hvar, d.d.

Hvar, island Hvar, Croatia

Site area
3.500 m2

Building area
478 m2

Total floor area
918 m2

private villas

reinforced concrete

brick, timber, glass

SADAR+VUGA (Jurij Sadar, Boštjan Vuga, Matjaž Bahor, Jure Sadar)

The villas on the Cliff are situated on the west part of the island Hvar. The location enables a direct connection with natural surroundings in proximity to the old town of Hvar.

As the island Hvar is one of the most visited Croatian islands, it offers distinctive accommodations for different guests. Villas on the Cliff are a new type of accommodation offered within the Sunčani Hvar Hotels portfolio. With younger generations and a higher value of individuality, the demand for private accommodations, which can still be shared or serviced, is on the rise. Villas on the Cliff offer maximum privacy and individuality within the diverse user groups in a cost-effective form of the design.

The long and narrow island Hvar has a hilly landscape, which offers spectacular views of its topography and the surrounding islands. The site is located on a cliff overlooking the coastline. The location has roughly 3500m2 and was divided into four equal plots. Four villas were placed onto the site, each positioned with focus on different viewscapes.

The architectural design of the villas derives from the traditional Mediterranean element of the arch. The traditional building technique is reinterpreted in the 3-dimensional vaulted arch, resulting in a distinctive spatial experience of the interior spaces. The vaulted element extends beyond the pool deck, blending the interior and exterior spaces of the villa. These canopies become the terraces in front of the private quarters on the upper floor.

The buildings are positioned so that they use the natural potential of the site. The access to all of the houses is from the upper floor, from which one descends onto the main floor, while maintaining the view of the sea. The upper level accommodates guests in four bedrooms with private bathrooms, which enhance the flexibility of the villa.

The ground floor is located on the height of the clifftop, which offers unobstructed views, framed by planted greenery. The centre of the main floor is the Dalmatian »konoba«, which is the main dining area, where dishes are prepared and enjoyed in a social circle. Konoba also connects two distinct outdoor areas of the building – the private, shaded patio and the main deck with a swimming pool and a sunbathing deck. The deck, which is the main outdoor area, spills into the landscape where more natural, private gardens planted with local species are shared with wellness and spa rooms. The design of the villas ensures that the indoor living spaces of the villa are always connected with the outdoors. The main deck, which is a single surface with a continuous view of the sea, varies in depth to allow enough space for dining or sunbathing of all the guests. Location, orientation, shading, views and functional connection to the rest of the villa makes the outdoor a living room that is used throughout the day.

The design of the main floor reinterprets traditional Dalmatian spaces in order to gain the benefits of centuries-long experience. All the spaces of the villa can be cross ventilated, which means they are using the cooler air from the shaded north side to create a pleasant and cool environment inside. Climate comfort is also achieved by strategic shading by using pergolas, canopies and a patio.