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Casa Um – a Minimalist Algarve Retreat


The irregular-shaped plot of about 10.500 sqm stands on a slope facing southwest, where it is possible to observe the Algarve coast. The vegetation of carob, olive, mastic, and almond trees stands out, bringing us to the traditional Algarve mountains.

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In the central area of the property, coincident with the most inclined terrain, there is a small residential building with 100sqm. The traditional Algarve architecture, recognizable by the presence of well-defined volumes and some characteristic elements, such as the chimney or the roof terrace with decorated cornice.

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The project reformulates the existing construction, placing in it all the social areas of the house (kitchen, living room, and dining room), in direct contact with the new outdoor leisure area. At a lower level, under this outdoor leisure area, a new volume holds the most private spaces of the house and its four bedrooms.

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By placing this new volume of about 150m2 of construction at a lower level, the goal is to achieve greater privacy in the bedrooms without visually blocking the views of the existing building to the Algarve coast, enhancing its privileged solar orientation. When enjoying social and outdoor spaces, the old house stands out while the new construction is not visible. All rooms are complemented by a small private patio that extends the indoor area to the outside, maintaining privacy.

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On the road that runs from Estiramantens and develops towards the North, the main access to the house, it is possible to see the whole building, with the pre-existing house crowning the new and contemporary construction. This new construction mirrors and reinterprets the visual, physical, and spatial archetypes of the traditional architecture of the Algarve.

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Architects: atelier RUA; Area: 280 m²; Year: 2020; Photographs: Francisco Nogueira;
Manufacturers: Swisspearl;

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