Location: Guadalajara, Jalisco, Mexico
Architect: HERNÁNDEZ SILVA ARQUITECTOS
Design date: 2009
Completion date: 2012
Site area: 541m2
Design Team: Alejandro Aponte Gomez, Roberto Pena Rodriguez
Photography: Carlos Diaz Corona
The project is based on the idea of making a house with the minimum amount of walls; transparent and wide. With a big void inside, it incorporates the old Spanish patio, being the main space of the house.
The formal concept is based on a blind volume which is the private part, and an open volume, these are interrelated through this big central void. The second level of the house reveals itself as a white solid element and the lower volume, a little darker. A piasentina stone covered wall confines the house all the way through the north-south axis; it doesn’t touch the slab, thus the second level seems to float above the ground floor. A concrete body is secured to the front and borders, along with a wooden wall, the vestibule. This wooden wall was rotated to vent the entrance, achieve a garden area in the entrance and reduce the circulation area inside while giving some chaos or drama when coming into the house.
At the entrance, the visitor is greeted by a great void where the three levels are connected, a glass cover with a metal lattice, which opens mechanically, was placed to enjoy natural light inside.
At the center there is a tree placed upon a water surface and an indoor green wall runs along the boundary wall from the vestibule and tops off with a piece of glass and vinyl made by the artist Jorge Méndez Blake to give continuity to the vegetation in a more conceptual way.
The house is only contained by the lateral walls, at the center lays a concrete volume to separate the kitchen and the family room from other spaces but at the same time it gives service to the dining-living and terrace area. Following the same idea, transparency, the kitchen doors can be fully opened creating a deck terrace with a wall full of vines at the end. The residence is designed as an open space that integrates the terrace with the living. The glass doors slide and hide behind a concrete wall those folds and shapes the fireplace.
The staircase is located in the central patio and it seems to float in the center of the vacuum with a central beam and glass railing. The metal planter forms the pond and melts with the piece of art and basement walls; the idea every element weaves and ties up horizontally and vertically along the house.
The circulation area in the basement is darker; it was painted gray to manifest the duality between light and dark; when going up the ladder the dichotomy is emphasized discovering light and directs the view to the green areas. In the basement level, there is a large game room, containing a bar, pool table and a TV area for entertaining. It is a space designed for big gatherings without interfering with the home privacy. Also on this level, the service area and laundry are located unfolding towards a void.
The bedrooms are placed on the second level; a single corridor links all the rooms to optimize the circulation areas, in the center there is a wooden wall that hides the linen closet. At the front there are two bedrooms with a common bathroom area but each has its own closet area. To the north, there is a bedroom with its own bathroom and wardrobe and the master bedroom, a generous space overlooking the garden. The dressing and closet areas surrounds the shower, tub, toilet and sink. The roof of this zone is higher to give the feeling of spaciousness and receive natural light from above.
The house is made with few materials, concrete walls in some volumes, plastered walls, Piacentina stone and Cumarú wood in some coverings. The carpentry was made in parota with horizontal wood grains to produce a dramatic use of this extraordinary wood. The house wouldn’t have much furniture; therefore some elements were incorporated to the architecture, one of them being the sideboard, a high gloss white wooden body, whose modulation is related to the stone covering.
The ground floor windows are frameless to make the inside out communication much more transparent. The terrace deck unfolds and forms a bar in a very subtle way. The cover is a steel structure and lattice with glass on top, which allows ha ving the doors open in rainy season while protecting the large terrace. At the back some trees were placed to finish the view while giving privacy to the house.