Catja de Haas Architects is a small practice that can design and deliver projects of very different scales. The practice’s main focus is to make life better for people in their home and in the community. We aim to make beautiful spaces and find the right creative solution for each of our clients.
We work closely with our clients to understand their brief, priorities, timescales and the demands of the site – environmental and planning. We have experience with different complexities of planning, including a planning application in a conservation area of AONB. Because we are a small practice each client receives expert advice, care and insight from a senior architect.
Our approach to a new project involves different stages, starting with determining what level of service is required and organising a fee proposal. After this initial meeting an appraisal is taken encompassing the needs of the occupants, so that layouts can be flexible for now and in the future. We then produce sketches, adopting a creative, flexible approach so that we can ensure we are all in agreement, before creating documents for planning.
We have a breadth of experience, particularly with the residential market. Catja de Haas has a Phd in research into the Home and Housing and teaches architecture at Bournemouth University. The teaching process enables the practice to be current with methods, insights and technologies required for good architecture. The practice is BIM ready. Alongside this academic experience, is her personal experience of understanding what it requires to make a successful home – her own home featured in The Times Magazine – more information on this link. She is well-travelled and has undertaken projects in a number of countries, as well as bringing up a family, working from home and being a carer for a family member. She brings these life experiences into each project whilst respecting that we are all individuals with our own idiosyncrasies.
We have a good knowledge of sustainability and can build to Fabric First or Passivhaus standards. We like to use local materials when possible and this love and understanding of materials is evident in our buildings. Although every client is different and each site has it’s own requirements, we are always sensitive to the landscape and a sense of place, as well as understanding light, space and form. We like the places we design to have blurred boundaries with the outside, so that there is a relationship between inside and outside. Our aim is to bring all these areas together to create something personal and beautiful for our clients.
For an initial consultation contact us by telephone
+44 7803627426 or email.
Stephen Foster — Foster Structures
Robert Chivers — Urban Green Artists
Antonio Moll — Moll Architects
Catja de Haas
Catja, PhD, RIBA, qualified as an architect at Delft University under Professor Herzberger. She also holds an MA in housing and Urbanism from the Architectural Association in London. Prior to setting up on her own she worked for Itsuko Hasegawa in Tokyo where she worked on projects in Japan and Malaysia, and Alsop Architects in London where she worked as a project architect on the Dutch projects. Between 2000 and 2005 she ran a practice, Studio CS, with Sabina Riss. In that time she built the house in France.
The home in miniature was the topic for her PhD by architectural design (supervisors Prof Jonathan Hill and Christine Hawley) which she finished at Bartlett school of Architecture, UCL, in 2013.
The practice researches the home and housing while raising awareness of homelessness and the refugee crisis through The Giant Dolls’ house Project. The project is the result of her ongoing research into the use of imagination and miniature to explore the ideas of home, sustainability and community participation as well as the dolls’ house as a medium to bring about change. Catja has exhibited her own work and has presented her work at conferences and universities. She has been a visiting lecturer and crit at various universities.
Manu Oganian Ojeda
Part 1 Assistant
Manuel joined Catja de Haas Architects as a Part 1 Assistant in early 2022 after graduating from the Edinburgh School of Architecture and Landscape Architecture at the University of Edinburgh. He has become a master at Revit and a great addition to the team. Prior to working at CDH he co-led the refurbishment of an apartment in Athens as part of his semester in industry. He has also spent summer placements gaining experience at David Chipperfield Architects in London and Planning Systems Services Ltd. in Nairobi. Manuel grew up in Kenya and speaks Spanish and Russian fluently, in his spare time he enjoys film photography, sketching, and traveling.
Manuel is a Spanish architect, who qualified in Madrid, with more than 15 years of international experience. Manuel has worked in world-renowned offices in different parts of the world: Spain, Portugal, Australia and China, where he worked with MAD architects. In Mexico he worked on one of the largest airports in America, designed by Foster + Partners. In the United Kingdom, he was an associate at Twelve Architects and worked with Heatherwick.
Having worked on four continents, in different cultures with different people, Manuel developed a sensibility to the needs of people, which translates in a good understanding of the brief, amazing presentation skills as well as the skills required to deliver well designed buildings. Manuel is currently qualifying as a Passivhaus consultant.
Manuel joined Catja de Haas architects in 2021 as a director and brings his wide ranging experience and design sensitivity to the team.