Casa Ombra: a house inscribed within an almost perfect cube

La Casa Ombra is a patio house: a house inscribed within an almost perfect cube. It is a white excavated cube whose mass has been subtracted to allow it to be inhabited. Terraces, visual frames, windows and a central courtyard of double-height form the palette of perforation strategies that transgress the purity of its geometry. Located in the municipality of San Pedro Garza García, in the metropolitan area of Monterrey in Mexico the house by Cadaval & Solà-Morales is set around a central courtyard that acts as an extension of the interior spaces.

It is a covered courtyard, with a pergola that allows mitigating the high solar incidence prevalent in this area of northern Mexico, but also to contain the space and provide it with a porous limit that allows the feeling of being protected in an interior space while being outside. Picking up the medieval European tradition, the main floor of the house is one level above street level. This gives it greater thermal comfort, but above all, it grants greater privacy and allows having bigger windows without the interior being observed from street level.

All the public uses of the house are located on the main floor: the living room, the dining room, the kitchen, the breakfast room and the TV room. They are organized around the central courtyard and open towards it, building a continuum between the rooms and the pool contained between the walls of the courtyard, and opening to the adjacent garden. The upper floor is reserved for the private areas of the house. Three rooms and a study open through large terraces and windows to the stunning views of the Sierra Madre de Monterrey.

The ground floor contains a cinema, a playground and the service areas. Despite such an elementary programmatic organization of the different floors of the house, spatial reading is organized through a single vertical void, building an intricate cross-view that makes the void the real protagonist of the project. The house was designed for the SorteoTEC and all the benefits obtained will go to scholarships for low-income students.

Design and info © Cadaval & Solà-Morales

Images © The Raws

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