At a first glance, you might not believe that Casa Numa is entirely built out of coconut palm wood over 50 years old. The 160 square meters of living space is a beauty to behold both inside and out.

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The exterior of a coconut palm wood home with a person standing out front.

Casa Numa is located on Holbox Island, Quintana Roo, where it functions as a vacation rental. According to Susana López, the chief architect behind the project, the idea behind the building was to integrate sustainability and nature in a modern living space. López is an architect with a Master’s Degree in Sustainable Design and Development for the City from the Instituto Tecnológico de Estudios Superiores de Monterrey. She is recognized for her exemplary work creating modern, sustainable designs.

Related: This collapsible cooler is insulated with upcycled coconut fiber

To the left, the house at an angle during the day. To the right, the house at an angle during the night.

This project is built out of old coconut tree wood. At first glance, the striking front lattice of coconut palm wood stands out. You can’t ignore the beauty of the pattern amid a sunny, warm environment. This lattice offers privacy by obscuring the view into the home.

A kitchen/dining area with white walls and wood cabinets and furniture.

The coconut palm wood used in the building is supported on sapote tree piles. All the materials are sustainably sourced from local jungles. Some may argue that such a design is wasteful for using too much wood, but it is important to note that all the wood used is over 50 years old. In other words, the designers used wood that would have otherwise ended up in flames, contributing to carbon emissions. Additionally, using locally sourced wood minimized the introduction of foreign materials to the island.

A pool enclosed by a wood fence.

The materials used in this project also benefit the home. Palm wood insulation minimizes heating needs and helps keep the house comfortable in both hot and cold conditions. The effectiveness of the materials also stands out in terms of the time needed for construction. Casa Numa’s structure was completed in only three months.

Two wood chairs looking off a deck overlooking a greenery-lined coast.

Casa Numa shows how nature can provide everything we need to live a comfortable life. With efficient, local materials, this project creates a sustainable, original living space.

+ RED Arquitectos

Photography by Miguel Calanchini