The catalan studio Arquitectura-g has renovated this house located in Cilleros (Cáceres, Spain). The original building was a traditional country house between party walls, with an elongated floor plan and a narrow centerline, facing a garden at the rear. Time and abandonment took the building to a complete state of dilapidation.
The owner wanted a house full of light, that would benefit from the open air and the backgarden. The center of the house didn’t have any light nor ventilation, making it less habitable. This constraints, added to a low budget, took the project to a very simple strategy.decided to keep the stone facade and the mud walls but they completely emptied and restored the interior organising it around a new central patio.
The new indoors patio is dominated by a birch tree. Surrounding and facing both of them, four staggered frameworks were built in different levels, each destined to a single purpose: kitchen, living room, bedroom 1 and bedroom 2.
The entire ground floor is paved in a great mantle of red catalan tile, accompanying the ceiling and defining the border of the birch tree. Located at the back of the ground floor there is a sort of Summer living room, a space completely open both to the patio and to the garden in order to enjoy the breeze while resting in the afternoon.
A main but in a way corner staircase leads to the rest of the levels, keeping flow from invading the spaces.
Each bedroom has its own bathroom, completely open to the patio and with a double-access either from the room or from the hallway. Bathrooms are fitted wit classic glossy white-enameled 15x15cm tiles. Apart from providing hygienic and waterproof conditions, this white tiling also reflects the leaves of the tree and the light coming from the patio, duplicating both effects.
Architects chose a broad-leaved deciduous tree to guarantee a generous shade during the warmer seasons, while allowing sunlight in during the winter, giving light and warmth to all spaces. At the same time, it works as a visual screen among the rooms.
The project deliberately looks for contrast through the irregular textures from the ceramic tiles, stone and mud walls, the latter lime-painted. The architects have set an atmosphere in which the red from the floor tiling and an intense green from the birch and gardenare the dominating colours, letting light bathing walls and floors with different shades throughout the day. Both framework and building are overwhelmingly simple.