Realstone Jerusalem is the stone-effect stoneware at the centre of an interesting project to refurbish and extend an old family estate with annexed farm on the island of Krk, in the Croatian village of Bajčići.

The complex is called Jerini House, in honour of the family that has lived there for two hundred years, and represented a real challenge for designers Branka Juras and Lorena Posinkov of Branka Juras Architects. The results embody the perpetual conflict between the desire to preserve the identity and legacy of the traditional architecture and the need to modernise the properties and architecture of traditional Croatian villages.

Renovating while honouring the past.

On the site of the old farmhouse with adjacent orchard and barn we now have two modern villas with all mod cons to accommodate up to 6 people each.

The larger of the two villas has been developed where the main family home once stood and has an adjoining spa with fitness area and indoor hydromassage pool, separated from the large outdoor pool by a glass window. The area once occupied by small animals now hosts a sunbathing terrace, open-air kitchen and dining area. The second villa has been developed from the old barn while the pigsty has been transformed into a laundry room that serves the entire complex.

The traditional guvno, a round stone area once used to store grain, wheat, oats and barley which over time was gradually used by the family as a place for gathering and relaxing after meals, has also been preserved and refurbished.

While both the interior and exterior of the original construction was made from stone, the materials chosen for the redevelopment project were concrete, wood and ceramic. More specifically, porcelain stoneware is used for both the indoor and outdoor floors, ensuring that the colours of the old building are preserved in Jerini House. Using a collection suitable for different types of installations and uses makes it possible to adapt thicknesses and sizes to different construction needs.

The “Noce” version of Realstone Jerusalem, stone-effect stoneware with varied and veined patterns, is used in all spaces but the surfaces of the collection adapt each time to the requirements of the project. A 10 mm-thick stoneware has been used indoors while more resistant and anti-slip 20 mm-thick tiles have been laid outside and around the swimming pool. The Realstone Jerusalem XT20 mmrange can also be used for raised paving and laid dry on gravel, sand and grass. This second form of installation has been used for the external area of the second villa, echoing the same textural and colour effects.

Guaranteeing excellent performance and extreme design flexibility in terms of its variety of sizes, thicknesses and material effects, a technical porcelain stoneware like the one used for this project gives designers lots of creative freedom, transforming from simple covering material into genuine crossover style element.

Project: Branka Juras and Lorena Posinkov, Branka Juras architects

Photographs: Srđan Hulak, Robert Matić

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