Retrofitting Victorian House
The proposal aims to create a simple addition to the beautiful landscape and to the hermitage of Sao Lazaro. Two simple corten-steel monolithic blocks are erected in the ground, near the ruin of the hermitage. A white pebbled path leads the visitors from the main road to the site. The observational tower is a simple straight line, while the information area is leaning to the tower. Like a domino effect, this aims to create a timeless and still endless movement. The space between the leaning block and the tower creates an entrance, a protected space that works as a filter between the landscape and the building. The information space is an enormous void with an open roof where you can see the sky and the tower. The ground is filled with white pebbles. The sound of walking on pebbles reminds the idea of the timeless journey between the Monsaraz and the site tower. The resting /viewing areas are intimate spaces obtained by “digging ” and removing mass from the block. These have metal shutters that regulate the sun heat and shadow and also, when closed, they create an uniform surface. All the blocks have corten finish to be waterproof, and the stairs are made of rusted perforated metal sheets. From the bottom of the stairs the diffuse light guides the visitor to the top of the stairs where from the Look -out platform you can admire the the breath-taking view of Monsaraz and the lake of Alqueva. All the ascendant/descendent journey is a journey of light and silence.
Landscape, Architecture, Competition
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