Sixth Edition 2017-2018 of the Swiss Architectural Award

Elisa Valero Ramos, a Spanish 47-year-old architect

The winner of the sixth edition of the Swiss Architectural Award

Editor: Hanieh Farajzadeh

She was selected among 32 candidates from 19 countries, thus winning the edition with the largest number of participants since the beginning of the award.

The Judges decided unanimously to grant the 2018 Swiss Architectural Award to Elisa Valero for the extension of a school building in Cerrillo de Maracena (Granada, 2013-2014), for the experimental houses in Granada (2015-2016) and for the church in Playa Granada (2015-2016).

The Swiss Architectural Award is aimed at recognizing and spotlighting architects from all over the world with showing a peculiar sensitivity to the environment, on the way of promoting a kind of architecture that is sensitive to contemporary ethical, aesthetic and ecological issues and make a significant contribution to it which can facilitate public debate.

Every 2 years the prize is awarded to architects aged less than 50 who have realized at least 3 important artworks. An international committee of consultants selected among undeniably famous architects and architecture critics presents candidates to the jury.

According to the panel, Elisa Valero’s architecture is driven by a strong personal commitment and by innovative research of construction solutions, which enable her to comply with the conditions required by functional programs and create very high-quality buildings, whilst making use of limited resources.

The Judges appreciated how Elisa Valero’s work deeply reflects the objectives of the Swiss Architectural Award, a prize that aims to encourage public debate on the potential of architecture by involving three Swiss Schools of Architecture.

The prize, which amounts to 100,000 CHF, will be presented to the winner on November 15th, 2018 at the Auditorium of the Theatre of Architecture.


Fernando Alda
Fernando Alda

1. The multipurpose hall for the Cerrillo de Maracena School in Granada was created by Elisa Valero Arquitectura. The exposed concrete extension is punctuated with tiny porthole windows, providing a somewhat monastic effect.


Fernando Alda
Fernando Alda

2. in the Spanish city of Granada, eight experimental residences, has been completed by Elisa Valero, organized around a shared terrace. All eight apartments are different and appropriate for the needs of each resident.


Fernando Alda
Fernando Alda

3. The church is a simple piece of concrete, close and accessible, located among the trees of an open garden, in the south of Andalucía’s Sierra Nevada mountain range. the exposed concrete structure seeks to convey a sense of sincerity and sobriety. the project is defined by a slender tower that emerges from the cuboid church building.

 Photos by Fernando Alda courtesy of Elisa Valero Arquitectura.


Hanieh Farajzadeh l Villanews