One of the oldest villages in Lebanon, with human presence dating back to antiquity, Mtein in Syriac translates to "morning" or "matino". Brimming with heritage, the architecture of Mtein takes us from the historical 16th century palaces of the “midane”, the village’s central square, to the archetypal stone dwellings of Lebanon, arising between the 17th and 19th century. Namely, a 200-year-old two-storey house with striking rib vaults that is at the center of a restoration and extension plan.
The contemporary addition is made to seamlessly tie-in with the original house, both physically and esthetically. The scale of both structures is comparable, and the new façade utilizes mineral textured plaster, creating congruence in tonality with the historic Lebanese limestone.
As a result of its various circulation routes, the property can be navigated in many engaging ways. To reach the backside of the house, comprising the pool, garden and sunken barrel vaults, one can take the passageway underneath the floating rectangular volume. Once at the back, the sloped terrain leading to the elevated terrace allows access into the contemporary construction via the semi-circular glazed opening. The floating exterior stair of the original house remains, while the glazed connection that is slot in-between the two blocks brings them together via three flights of stairs.
The pool makes the most out of the picturesque landscape, positioned in a place of shade amongst mature oak and mulberry trees. Lining the house from the main street are pine trees, while a single majestic laurel tree shifts the otherwise straight perimeter of the property, as it belongs to the neighboring plot of land.