When responding to these requirements, the Subarquitectura team says they considered a number of possibilities for the design, but that even they were surprised when they came up with the idea for a fully circular house. “The client only imposed on us formal restrictions… but the process of the project was drifting towards a continuous geometry and a curved, enclosed semi-outdoor courtyard, which resolved in a clear and compelling way all the requirements of the house… Finally we provided an unexpected solution to it – even for us at first – that exceeded their expectations.”
The team also says that in addition to satisfying the requirements of the client, the design also creates a unique experience for residents and guests of the home. “As a result of the helix-like shape, and by allowing travel in a smooth and continuous way thanks to an 8% slope along the walkways, it creates the sensation when using it that it is much bigger than it appears on the outside.” Another unique feature is evidenced in the dual entrances that bookmark the home, which allow the entire structure to be traversed from two separate directions. “We talk about the two different ways of living in that house, without necessarily separating them physically. We can walk through it in a long way, using the ramp that gives access to the private rooms, or we can use the ‘shortcut,’ by way of the stairs, that brings us directly to the living room.”
According to the team, they took great care so that even the potential downsides of their design were transformed into desirable features. For instance, towards the center of the home where it descends into the sloping earth, there is no opportunity for windows or an outside view. However, they instead take advantage of that isolation by placing a mediatheque in this portion of the house, which benefits from the lack of exposure to the outside world.