The house is located on a large field of mature cork oaks and stone pines in Grandola, Alentejo, near the Atlantic coast. Following the principle of Portuguese vernacular architecture, the house is generated from a formal patio, which is the main source of light and shade. Around and against this cut-off space, adjoining volumes aggregate the more private or servicing functions of the house –bedrooms, toilets, kitchen, pantry and storage, whereas the interstitial spaces between the volumes generate the social areas, namely, the living- and dining- rooms and the study.
In that regard, the house work in a dialogue between opposites: on the one hand, the aggregate volumes are thick and enclosed whitewashed cells with few openings that suggest privacy and seclusion; on the other, the common areas are organic and visually linked spaces free-flowing through the serenity of the internal glass patio. The latter offers crisscrossing views into the surrounding landscape of oak fields; a contemplative frame that, once again, creates an emphatic contrast with the tectonic presence of the white blocks. The seeming massiveness obtained as a first impression, is ultimately dismissed, once the large sliding windows vanish into the walls and release a surprising transparency across the whole.
Grandola (Alentejo), Portugal
Gross Built Area
2004 (concept design) – 2011 (built)