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Interior | Residential & Houses

Cork Tree House

TRAMA Arquitetos

Project description

We were approached by a young family, who has a close relationship with architecture, to develop a project that materialized the DNA of Trama Arquitetos. Furthermore, in addition to a harmonious design, the project should focus on the space details. The intention was to surprise, to integrate the exterior surroundings with the interior environment, to merge spaces and create sensations, without discouraging functionality. CORK TREES HOUSE. The name of the house reflects the fundamental role that the native vegetation played during the project development. The terrain, on a steep slope, is composed of a grove of centuries-old cork oak trees, located on the lowest level. In this context, the house was designed to enjoy the best sun exposure and also the open views over the mountains and valleys of the region. We started from the idea that the floor of the house should be in line with the canopy of cork trees, as if it were a garden that floats on the horizon. Therefore, we designed a functional single-floor plan, occupying almost the entire width of the plot. As for materiality, we associated raw and natural materials that would merge with the surroundings. We started from concrete, stone, wood and steel. Outside, the exposed concrete merges subtly with natural shale and corten steel oxidized by time. About the interior this project is about care and dedication, the result of a team effort and a clear compromise in delivering pristine design. It is the result of countless hours committed to condense and purify all aspects of this “habitat”, refining every detail until they vibrate in unison for a clear and simple result. Even if the client expected the project to reflect a certain “status quo”, the process was conducted in a way to avoid excess and ostentation, being detailed but carefully integrated with subtlety. Functionally organized in only one floor, the spaces are placed along an axis inherited by the terrain, interrupted by a lake that crosses the house transversally, defining the boundary between social and private spaces. Several courtyards strategically placed along the program fade the boundaries between interior and exterior, creating scenarios accentuated by the contrast of light and shadow through openings carved in the roof. The material palette was thought as an whole – inside walnut wood coated walls are dominant in spaces that expand outward, since the roman travertine marble floor and cast concrete ceiling and walls are continuous, with only a immaterial glass curtain separating inner and outer spaces. Being one the extension of the other, the frontier between building and landscape is as transparent as the glass containing it. The challenge was to carefully combine raw and natural materials to achieve a comforting environment, rich in colour and texture. Synthesis is the overall premise, punctuated by subliminal details, delicately integrated. As a result, we achieved a project that is harmonious with the surrounding environment and is intended to be timeless.

Project details
Location:Braga - Portugal
Studio NameTRAMA Arquitetos
Lead designerBruno Leitão and Marco Bernardino
Design teamAdriano Peixoto, Ricardo Silva, Eduarda Rocha, Helena Vilar, Catarina Silva and Ivo Silva
Photography creditsJoão Morgado
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