Ecork is a Hotel in Évora, Portugal, with a spa, health club, gym, restaurant, bar, conference rooms, outdoor pool and 56 bungalows. Built on a set of cork and olive trees, the general plan is inspired in the Medieval villages of the Alentejo, where it was common to find a main complex (Castle) and several white buildings around it. All services and hotel facilities are aggregated into a single building, freeing the land outside the bungalows. Influenced by the vernacular and Arabic architecture, is created a monolithic volume with small openings to the outside, which together with cork coating, fully recyclable, ensures thermal protection of the building.
Built around a large courtyard, the layout is designed so as to take advantage of cross- winds and air circulation, thus reducing power consumption to the minimum necessary. In order to ensure the lowest possible occupation and overview of the Alentejo Landscape, outdoor pool and bar are located on the roof of the building. All 56 bungalows are suites. Their deployment, scattered among the olive trees around the property is defined by the structure of internal thoroughfares. These paths are read as a series of abstract volumes and surfaces, plastered and whitewashed.
Info and images © José Carlos Cruz – Arquitecto