A house of intersecting domes hidden in Monsaraz

Faced with the boundless extents of the Alqueva lake, this house in Monsaraz, Portugal required a centre: a protected courtyard embracing the water.

The building by Aires Mateus uses the terrain to cast a dome that covers the social areas and is the life centre of the house. An inverted dome intersects it and creates an opening that lights the space, shaping its precise geometry and limits. The bedrooms open onto circular patios.

Amid a wide natural landscape, the scale of the house is that of the patios and superior dome. They are the sole visible elements, painted in radiant white.

Design and info © Aires Mateus

Images © João GuimarãesRui Cardoso and Aires Mateus

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