Extruded Red Bricks Create a Gorgeous, Geometric Mexican Home

Extruded Red Bricks Create a Gorgeous, Geometric Mexican Home

By Michele Koh Morollo
In Puebla, Mexico, two local architecture firms team up to create the Saint Peter House—a striking brick home with a unique, gabled-roof facade.

Built with locally sourced red bricks,  pine wood, reinforced concrete, glass, and steel, there is no question that the 1,270-square-foot property known as Saint Peter House stands out among its neighbors in the San Pedro Cholula municipality of Puebla, Mexico. 

After a request to build a cost-effective, high-quality and efficient home, with expressive geometry and unique living spaces, local firms Proyecto Cafeína and Estudio Tecalli used the area's red bricks to create the house’s unusual split-gable form. 

The traditional bricklaying technique enabled the second-level interior space to become larger.

The use of local bricks and traditional building techniques connects the residence with its historical and cultural context, while improving light penetration and air circulation.

The gaps between the courses also allow the brick wall to double as a window, framing views and drawing in more light and air. 

The gaps in the brickwork naturally brighten the interiors.

According to Proyecto Cafeína’s founder Leonardo Neve, the design process of Saint Peter House began with the idea of finding new ways to  express geometry and materiality. 

A sculptural metal staircase leads up from the open common area to the mezzanine bedroom.

The architects established a new dialogue with the site by redefining the traditional gabled roof shape into an asymmetric, contemporary form by using red bricks that are commonly seen in buildings around the area.

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The triangulated floor plan centers around a single, double-height space, and features an open-plan kitchen, living, and dining area on the ground level. 

The traditional artisan bricklaying method used to construct the house created small gaps between the brick courses, which enabled a section of the exterior wall to extend outward, maximizing the usable floor space and creating a striking 3D façade. 

The entrance door is made of mirror-like glass to enhance privacy.

"The main goal for this project was to achieve a unique experience of warmth and connection with the user by using materials almost in its raw state—like the brick walls, wood beams, and concrete-and-steel frames and stairs," notes Neve. 

A look at the master bedroom located on the mezzanine level. 

A second bedroom, along with a bathroom and laundry room, are set around an interior patio that is connected to the master bedroom.

The architects also designed and custom-made the lamps and accessories for the interiors to enhance the experience of being within this unique and cozy residence.

From the glass wall of the master bedroom, the user can look down into the living lounge.

Sunlight enters the shower area through the gaps between the bricks.

Saint Peter House first-level floor plan

Saint Peter House second-level floor plan

Saint Peter House cross sectional drawing

Project Credits: 

Architecture: Proyecto Cafeina, @proyectocafeina; and Estudio Tecalli, @estudio_tecalli

Structural engineering: Francisco Jimenez Castillo 


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