A Sculptural Holiday Home is Shaped by the Peruvian Desert

A Sculptural Holiday Home is Shaped by the Peruvian Desert

By Lucy Wang
Designed with locally sourced stone and red-tinted cement, this coastal retreat effortlessly blends into its surrounding landscape.

Perched on a cliff between the Peruvian desert and the Pacific Ocean, the C3 House is the work of architects Sandra Barclay and Jean Pierre Crousse. Their Lima–based studio, Barclay & Crousse, tapped into local craftsmanship and materials to create a sculptural home that takes full advantage of dramatic ocean views without detracting from the landscape.

Located 31 miles north of Lima, the C3 House is set in a windswept Ancón landscape that the architects describe as "martian-like."

"Avoiding an objectual relationship with context, the house is conceived as a soil extrusion rather than an object in landscape," note the architects.

The living room and dining area occupy the heart of the "living" volume and are enclosed on both sides by full-height glazing.

Commissioned by a couple with grown children, the C3 House serves as a holiday retreat with four bedrooms and plenty of space for entertaining. The 5,887-square-foot dwelling is split into four staggered volumes, each separated by function.

Travertine lines the living room and dining area.

On the ground floor are the garage and entrance that lead up to the primary entertaining spaces, which frames views of the Pacific Ocean through floor-to-ceiling windows. 

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A look inside the master bedroom with a vaulted ceiling.

The view of the pool and ocean from the master bedroom.

"Local puzzolanic cement, commonly used for foundations, was used to give a reddish color to concrete to merge with the cliffs," explain the architects.

The two other volumes house the bedrooms and are topped with accessible landscaped terraces.

The architects note that cantilevering part of the concrete roof gave the home the desired "unfinished" quality that the homeowners were originally seeking.

Blending the home into the landscape was one of the biggest challenges, along with staying within the $400,000 budget. To minimize costs, Barclay & Crousse turned to basic construction methods so that local, non-specialized labor could be used. 

All four bedrooms overlook the Pacific Ocean.

 "A few masons were able to carve local stone and pour concrete in recycled wooden formwork, which reduced tremendously the cost for such a building," the firm adds. "A special effort was made for the concrete vaults, and the masons were extremely proud to accomplish that endeavor."

Casa C3 master bedroom and pool floor plan

Casa C3 floor plan of the bedroom spaces

Casa C3 floor plan of the living areas

Casa C3 diagram

Project Credits: 

Architect of Record: Barclay & Crousse 

Builder/ General Contractor: Ruben Cavallini (mason)

Structural Engineer: Jorge Indacochea

Photography: Cristóbal Palma (@estudiopalma)

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