Tradition and Zeitgeist

A Detached Family House in Szentendre

Architect: Péter Borbás
Text: Krisztián Dudics
Photos: László Beliczay

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Sitting on the slope of Szamárhegy on a narrow strip of land wedged between two zigzagging streets, there had been a small dilapidated house when Péter Borbás and his family bought the lot to build their own home. Szentendre and the neighbouring streets featuring a rural-urban character spiced with Mediterranean taste, as well as the integral scale of development here turned adjustment into something like a law of nature. The new house follows the silhouette of the old one, with a roof design echoing that of the former. The simple scheme is combined with well-proportionate and rich details to evolve the house, which results from the architect’s natural tendencies, his versatile schooling and inspiration drawn from the vernacular architecture. Except for the cellar, the existing house could not be preserved regarding its materials and structure, but the building materials left over from its demolition could be used later on for the facework of the walls, furniture items and the gate or used as firewood. The house as such reflects clear basic principles: it is based on scales and proportions harmonizing with those of its neighbourhood, as well as set on a straight backbone around which it could freely move its flexible muscles to produce an individual choreography of its own according to current conditions to meet existing needs. Péter Borbás does not only understand and love: he actually possesses the vernacular architectural approach and organisation as his own, but also naturally joins the mainstream of contemporary architecture and filters it with his individual creative attitude. As a result, design and organisational principles borrowed from vernacular architecture prove that it is actually possible to proportionately harmonize inspirational contemporary gestures of architects with traditions and current Zeitgeist.

Architect: Péter Borbás
Structure: Péter Donáczi – Pond Mérnöki Iroda Kft.
HVAC: Krisztián Jacsó
Interiors: Péter Borbás
Stoneworks: Sándor Nemcsók
Timberworks: János Urbanics
Main contractor: Péter Borbás