On the west coast of Portugal in the village of Comporta, located roughly 75 miles south of Lisbon, Estúdio Amatam developed a shared vacation house for two French families to seek respite from urban living.
For the 2,371-square-foot getaway, dubbed Brejos da Carregueira House, the Portuguese studio focused on creating a close relationship between the interior gathering spaces and outdoor areas. Another goal for Estúdio Amatam was to "revive the morphology of traditional Portuguese houses in the countryside," explain architects João Pedro Escaleira Amaral and Manuela Tamborino, the studio’s cofounders.
The five-bedroom holiday home features a markedly modern exterior comprised of two white, rectangular volumes. The geometric exterior incorporates subtle nods to traditional rural buildings in Portugal, such as wooden doorways and window frames, as well as white ceramic brickwork.
The north-facing front facade is protected by a wall with planted greenery, while the southern end of the home opens to a large yard with a swimming pool. An outdoor dining area with a barbecue is shaded by a Jasmin plant that grows through the steel cables of a cantilevered pergola.
Based on the idea that the families would frequently be preparing meals for nearby beach trips or while the residents were lounging around the pool, the architects designed the kitchen and indoor living spaces to flow seamlessly with the outside areas. Large, sliding glass doors connect the yard to the two main social areas of the house: the living room and kitchen.
The architects experimented with different ceiling heights in the indoor kitchen, living, and dining areas to create what they describe as "spatial hierarchies," stating: "We wanted to explore some characteristics of interior rural houses that have accompanied us since childhood."
"We sought to develop a house with its own identity, both outside and inside," add the architects. "Furthermore, it can bring together two distinct languages, one inside—more traditional—and one outside—more modern—with the best qualities of both."
Builder/General Contractor: Fernando Pedreiro Construção Civil, Lda.
Structural Engineer: Engenharia 34
Civil Engineer: Maurício Dias Engenharia
Electrical Engineer: Watthora Servigos de Engenharia, Lda
Interior Design: Estúdio Amatam
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