Contemporary U House, Portugal
Jorge Graca Costa a Portuguese architect has designed the U House project. The hill top property was desisgned for a surfer and his family. The contemporary property can be found in Ericeira, Portugal.
According to the architects: “The U House located in Ericeira, a world surfing hotspot, was designed for José Gregório three times national surf champion and a well known big wave rider.
“This contemporary Portuguese house occupies a big lot, surrounded by a dense mesh of trees, on top of a hill overlooking Saint Lorenzo Bay.
“Our mutual interest in sustainability didn’t keep us from wholeheartedly embracing modern design. The goal was to avoid green pronouncements, allowing to achieve ascetics and exciting architecture solutions, instead of designing a building fully controlled by superfluous green technologies and merely aggregating raw materials.
“The contemporary house design emerges from the inevitability of protection of prevailing winds. The north wind dominant in the summer and the stormy south wind dominant in the winter carrying the rain from the sea. Therefore the central idea was a design based in the reinterpretation of ancient’s Mediterranean patio houses, creating a patio sitting on a plateau embraced by two long arms interconnected by a third body, never ignoring the fabulous views to the west even in interior spaces.
“Abundant glazing brings in natural light while a high performance envelope controls temperatures.
“Eco-friendly interior design finishes and artwork made from recycled materials take place in prominent places in the home.
“There are various sustainable features including: cork has a primary isolation material, passive design (natural heating and cooling), floor and water heating by solar panels supported by biomass heating, micro-climate environment created by the patio and the pool (pool water without chemical treatment) and rainwater harvesting (collected in a preexisting well) for irrigation proposes.
“The success of the property is in its harmonising design, functionality and sustainability is augmented by its livability, extreme comfort and considerable savings in consumption of water and energy. Its humble size and careful design are a testament to the success balance of architecture with a prescriptive performance design.”
Images courtesy of Fernando Guerra and Sergio Guerra.