Diseño Earle is an international architecture firm known for unique, and often ecologically minded, projects around the world. Their latest design responds to a brief “to design and build a large and modern zero carbon footprint villa” in Southern Spain. The result is The Eco House, a modern luxury villa that holds up its name with a variety of environmentally friendly features including a chemical free canal that facilitates cooling.
The most apparent feature of The Eco House is the butterfly roof which serves several purposes. The angle allows the roof integrated solar panels to sit at the optimum angle for solar energy harvesting. The roof also creates a space around the building exterior where thermal air currents are created. As air passes across the roof, the building is cooled and ventilated through adjustable louvered vents on the main roof. A double glass facade functions in a similar way around the building, and the entire structure is built above a 30cm deep canal which enhances the natural cooling and ventilation.
The modern, glass filled design allows plenty of natural light into living spaces, while a natural, saline pool helps keeps chemicals out. The building stores grey water in holding tanks in the basement, and features a rainwater harvesting system to manage and conserve water. The rooftop photovoltaics supply electricity to a radiant floor heating system that works in tandem with the natural ventilation of the building which retains and removes heat by natural thermal draws throughout the structure. A geoexchange system provides backup heating and cooling.