Transforming TIjuana

written by:
photos by:
March 16, 2009
Originally published in America Goes Modern
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  • 
  Paola Gracia keeps an eye on Kata, one of the couple’s schnauzers, from the second- story balcony. In the shade below the balcony is the dogs’ house, meant to mimic the Gracias’, that architect Jorge Gracia built from leftover building materials.
    Paola Gracia keeps an eye on Kata, one of the couple’s schnauzers, from the second- story balcony. In the shade below the balcony is the dogs’ house, meant to mimic the Gracias’, that architect Jorge Gracia built from leftover building materials.
  • 
  The two structures that comprise the house frame views of the ever expanding city. The backyard is perfect for frolicking dogs and children, with concrete block walls just high enough to keep them in but low enough to not keep the city out.
    The two structures that comprise the house frame views of the ever expanding city. The backyard is perfect for frolicking dogs and children, with concrete block walls just high enough to keep them in but low enough to not keep the city out.
  • 
  Jorge appreciates his efforts at twilight. The polycarbonate panels that partially clad the exterior of the structure provide a warm glow, adding life to Tijuana’s densely packed rolling hillsides
    Jorge appreciates his efforts at twilight. The polycarbonate panels that partially clad the exterior of the structure provide a warm glow, adding life to Tijuana’s densely packed rolling hillsides
  • 
  From the rear of the Gracia house, the city’s still rough character comes through.
    From the rear of the Gracia house, the city’s still rough character comes through.
  • 
  Jorge and Paola proudly displayed their son’s name on their back patio for his christening. With plenty of cousins to keep him company, Max (in Paola’s arms at left) will undoubtedly be pleased that his parents decided to stay put in Tijuana.
    Jorge and Paola proudly displayed their son’s name on their back patio for his christening. With plenty of cousins to keep him company, Max (in Paola’s arms at left) will undoubtedly be pleased that his parents decided to stay put in Tijuana.
  • 
  In the living room, mid-century classics are the foundation while art from the house’s “coming out” party by Enrique Ciapara adds some personality.
    In the living room, mid-century classics are the foundation while art from the house’s “coming out” party by Enrique Ciapara adds some personality.
  • 
  Jorge finds some time to relax in the living room. Chaise longue by Le Corbusier; coffee table by Noguchi.
    Jorge finds some time to relax in the living room. Chaise longue by Le Corbusier; coffee table by Noguchi.
  • 
  In the kitchen, Jorge worked with local cabinet makers, Muebles Finos JV, to create ample storage, leaving countertops uncluttered. The LEM Piston Stools are by Shin and Tomoko Azumi.
    In the kitchen, Jorge worked with local cabinet makers, Muebles Finos JV, to create ample storage, leaving countertops uncluttered. The LEM Piston Stools are by Shin and Tomoko Azumi.
  • 
  Jorge’s office is on the basement level which provides easy access to the outside.
    Jorge’s office is on the basement level which provides easy access to the outside.
  • 
  The master bathroom has its own open-air patio that faces the street.
    The master bathroom has its own open-air patio that faces the street.
  • 
  Hardwood floors throughout provide continuity from the  living space to the sleeping quarters. The entryway staircase divides the two structures.
    Hardwood floors throughout provide continuity from the living space to the sleeping quarters. The entryway staircase divides the two structures.
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