By Ewald Burkhart, Elektro Ewald.
When the Erlacher family decided to convert a hunting lodge into a rentable holiday home in the mountains of South Tyrol, they wanted it to include state-of-the-art technology so that guests could pamper themselves and relax in this beautiful and natural setting.
The Mountain Lodge Tamersc is 130m2 and features two floors housing a living area with an open cooking and dining area on the ground floor and two bedrooms and bathrooms upstairs. An additional bedroom and bathroom are located in an adjacent hut.
The lodge has a minimalist design and is almost entirely constructed of larch wood. Clear lines dominate the floor plan and furniture, and most of the furnishings are integrated into the lodge. The cabinet in the sleeping area acts both as storage and a room divider, and doors are nearly invisible. Light slits allow flashes of nature within the lodge, while large panoramic windows in the living area offer gorgeous views of the surrounding mountain landscape.
The brief was to provide a system that would automate lighting, HVAC and security, and control a multiroom audio system and satellite TV. Because the lodge is rented by holidaymakers, the system had to be robust, reliable and easy to use, adapting to the guests’ wishes, rather than vice versa. Furthermore, the owner wanted remote control and monitoring.
We specified a KNX system to network all functions, with control either using a central touchpanel in the building or via an iPhone or iPad while away. This means that heating can be switched on or the driveway lighting can be activated while you are returning back to the lodge.
An ‘All off’ function ensures that all electrical devices are switched off and the alarm system is activated when leaving the home. In addition, fault messages including faults, burglar and fire alarms, as well as current webcam images, are sent directly to the owner’s mobile phone if no one is in the lodge.
The customised dimmable lighting fixtures are made of black plate treated with buffalo wax and offer a contrast to the light wooden surfaces. The switches for other floor, wall and ceiling lamps – some of which have shades – are also special designs made to match, and can be used to select individual light and sound scenarios.
A Gira Weather Station continuously measures the temperature, brightness and precipitation conditions, and these measurements are used to control the floor heating, ventilation and lighting automatically. When needed, large wooden sliding units can quickly darken the panoramic windows of the main and adjacent hut.
All of the home technology was programmed by the systems integrator ProgPlan. We used a Gira HomeServer acts as the central control unit that processes all of the information, and automatically transmits commands to the individual components.
Thanks to the KNX installation, the Mountain Lodge Tamersc allows holidaymakers to enjoy modern facilities combined with south Tyrolean cosiness for a unique, contemporary and special atmosphere.
Ewald Burkhart is the Founder of Elektro Ewald, an experienced electrical contractor and KNX Partner operating in the South Tyrol and Puster Valley region of Italy.