Neoptolemos and Maria Michaelides’ House

Location

Nicosia, Cyprus

35.09567, 33.21054

Author

Neoptolemos Michaelides

Architect

Built in

1966

Neoptolemos Michaelides was one of the most important Cypriot architects. His house was designed in 1964 and built in the year 1966, next to the Pedieos river in Nicosia. The residence is one of the most important works of modern architecture in Cyprus. It was designed to be used, and it was used, as both a living and working space by his artist wife and himself.

Neoptolemos Michaelides, born in 1920, was one of the most pioneering and important Cypriot architects. He studied in Milan in the 1940s and had as his mentors the great architects of the time, including Gio Ponti and Brno Zevi.

His work was inspired by the contemporary Milanese avant-garde architectural scene of that time. He also incorporated tradition and local materials with modern architecture principles in his designs. The elements he was using were stone, wood, water, lighting, comfort and austerity, combined with modern building materials such as concrete, glass, iron, etc.

His house was designed in 1964 and built in the year 1966, next to the Pedieos river in Nicosia. The residence is one of the most important works of modern architecture in Cyprus. It was designed to be used, and it was used, as both a living and working space by his artist wife and himself. He gave importance in the orientation of the building in order to have natural light and a natural cooling system. It is divided into three autonomous levels, connected with a vertical marble staircase embedded in concrete. On the top floor, he designed his office—a large studio with an arched ceiling. The building also included a gallery space for paintings and other artefacts. The terraces around the building were extended from the interiors to allow the sun and wind to naturally enter the rooms.

The construction can be characterised as elegant and sophisticated. Most of the materials used in the structure were kept pure in order to maintain their natural colour and texture and make the building look complex, but at the same time beautifully plain.

He died in 1992 at the age of 72, after falling from a scaffolding construction during the supervision of a building. Since then, the house has remained closed. It is managed by the Neoptolemos and Maria Michaelides Foundation.

More information regarding the building:
http://www.cy-arch.com/neoptolemos-michaelides-house-in-nicosia-hadjivassiliou/

Text by Elia Neophytou

Function

1966Residential building

1993 – Closed, after Neoptolemos Michaelides’ death

Ownership

1966 Neoptolemos and Maria Michaelides

1993 – Closed, after Neoptolemos Michaelides’ death Neoptolemos and Maria Michaelides Foundation

Condition

1966 Good

1993 – Closed, after Neoptolemos Michaelides’ death Good

Property Management

1966

1993 – Closed, after Neoptolemos Michaelides’ death

Form of government

1966 Presidential Republic (Republic of Cyprus)

1993 – Closed, after Neoptolemos Michaelides’ death Presidential Republic (Republic of Cyprus)

Spatial Planning Agency

1966

1993 – Closed, after Neoptolemos Michaelides’ death

Type of heritage and protection

1966 Local monument

1993 – Closed, after Neoptolemos Michaelides’ death Local monument