An Abandoned Stable in Spain Is Transformed Into a Sustainable Vacation Home For Rent

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By Michele Koh Morollo / Published by Dwell
This forgotten stable in the Spanish province of Cáceres was converted into a vacation rental that takes full advantage of its geography in order to ensure energy efficiency.

Because the original stable was in such bad shape, it had to be resurrected from scratch. The team at Madrid-based studio Ábaton Arquitectura took on the job. 

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They demolished the dilapidated stable, but reused many of the materials—including old stones, iron beams, and a mixture of cement and local stone—to rebuild a much sturdier structure with similar dimensions.

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The stable's stunning site inspired the architects to add large windows on the front, which maximizes the view and connects the interiors with its surroundings. 

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Wooden sliding doors on the outside of the 3,200-square-foot house can be closed for privacy.

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For the interiors, a light metal structure was installed to replace the old stone structural walls.

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The ground floor includes a commodious open-plan living area with a fireplace, as well as a long dining table that merges into a kitchen island counter and lounge area.

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The upper-level hayloft was converted into two double bedrooms and one large dormitory. As a result, the house can now comfortably accommodate up to 16 guests.

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Because the house is sited on a hill and located below two streams that flow down from a mountain, the architects built a courtyard on the downward sloping side. They incorporated a stone water fountain in this courtyard to collect the pure water, which flows year-round from the two streams.

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This fresh mountain water is used for drinking, bathing, and to fill a swimming pool on the property, which doubles as a holding tank for irrigation. 

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The water is also used for hydropower, which works in tandem with solar panels to generate the house's electricity.

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The building’s southern orientation maximizes the amount of sunlight that enters the interiors during winter, while large eaves help to keep the house cool in summer.

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Most of the soft furnishings were sourced from Madrid furniture store BATAVIA.

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Available for rent through Urlaubsarchitektur, this house makes the most of its heritage and site, and would make a great eco-friendly escape for a large group. 

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