This house, described by many online as the ideal layaway for a Jamed Bond villain, had an interesting gestation. It first emerged in July 2015, when the Dutch architecture firm OPA released some renderings of a conceptual home – Casa Brutale, on their Instagram page. The images went viral, spreading far and wide, and eventually reached the inbox of Alex Demirdjian in Lebanon. He’s the CEO of the development company, Demco Properties, and so enamoured was he with the subterranean home that he got in touch with OPA to see if they’d be willing to turn it into a reality. After just a couple of meetings, the two parties reached terms and it was agreed that Laertis Antonios Ando Vassiliou, a cofounder of OPA, would create a new firm (called LAAV Architects) and take the lead in localising the design for Demco’s Redrock project in Faqra, a high-end residential community in Lebanon, which is situated at an elevation of 1,800 metres above sea-level. They also decided that LAAV should take on a strong engineering partner to ensure the viability and integrity of the cliffside house and Arup from Amsterdam was chosen for its stellar track record on prestigious projects such as Sydney’s Opera House and the Bird’s Nest in Beijing. We’ve been informed by Demco that piling will begin this May and the house should be completed 24 months after that.