Private Residence, Oahu, Hawaii

This charming residential dwelling, nestled on the idyllic island of Oahu, Hawaii, boasts a location within a mere mile of the majestic ocean. Originally, this humble abode was a quaint ‘surf shack,’ where skilled artisans crafted old-style surfboards back in the late 1970s. However, a recent wave of renovations has seamlessly transformed this rustic shack into a cozy getaway in one of Hawaii’s most enchanting coastal beach communities.

The transformation of this beachfront retreat involved the integration of Altair Louvre Window strip hardware, elegantly finished in white, into a custom third-party frame with an exterior screen configuration. The pièce de résistance is the 152mm (6 inches) clear obscure glass blades, equipped with standard handles for effortless control at lower levels.

One of the remarkable design choices in this renovation was the installation of Altair Louvres high up on the structure. This strategic placement serves a dual purpose, creating a natural thermal chimney effect that is both energy-efficient and aesthetically pleasing. This design feature enables the interior spaces to be naturally cooled, enhancing the comfort of the occupants.

The thermal chimney effect operates on the simple principle of convection. Rising warm air, trapped within the living spaces, is drawn towards the high-set Altair Louvres. These cleverly positioned louvres act as escape routes for the heated air, allowing it to exit the building gracefully. As the hot air rises and departs through the louvres, it simultaneously creates a low-pressure zone within the house.

This decrease in air pressure inside the dwelling prompts cooler outside air to be drawn in through the lower windows and doors. The inflow of fresh, cool air helps maintain a comfortable indoor temperature, preventing warm, stagnant air from recirculating inside the home. This innovative design not only enhances the comfort of the living space but also significantly contributes to energy efficiency and sustainability by reducing the need for mechanical cooling systems.

In essence, this thoughtful integration of Altair Louvres marries the spirit of Hawaii’s surf culture with modern sustainability, making this coastal retreat a harmonious blend of tradition and innovation, where the soothing sounds of the nearby ocean are complemented by a naturally cool and comfortable living environment.

Project Date – July 2013