Founded in 1723, Todos Santos is a small town located between La Paz and Cabo San Lucas in the Mexican state of Baja California Sur. Between the mid-nineteenth century and the first half of the twentieth century, the area enjoyed a flourishing period thanks to the production of sugar, explaining the presence of beautiful colonial-style buildings scattered throughout the historic city centre. With the drought of the 1950s, the aquifer decreased dramatically and began to dry up, causing a huge loss of sugarcane crops and the need to rethink the area. Beginning in the 1980s, motorway access also began to bring tourists to the area, and in recent years, many artists and artisans have relocated here, turning Todos Santos into a vibrant cultural and artistic center.
It was precisely this reputation that attracted two clients to Casa Calaviaa couple from Colorado, USA, approached Studio RED Arquitectos led by Susana Lopez To build their home between the desert mountains and the waves of the Pacific Ocean. As the Mexican architect explains, the guiding idea of the project is Continuity and rupture: “Geometric continuity between circles and curves is derived from the never-ending landscape, which continues and merges with other landscapes. The geometric discontinuity occurs with the language formally created by the surrounding buildings.”
As usual in her style, she chose Susana Lopez Simple and accessible materials For the construction of Casa Calavia, consisting of concrete blocks coated with cement and natural pigments. A solution as the architect tells us “This allows us to appreciate the house as a monolithic sculpture, while at the same time controlling the thermal sensation of intense heat.” On the other hand, the brick grid not only serves as a soleil force, but is a direct indication of the physical importance that the small town once had. The wood used for carpentry is Tabebuia rosea, a native tree suitable for the production of furniture and fixtures.
The Core Sustainability Casa Calavia – which takes its name from Queen Calavia, the legendary Amazon queen who is deeply rooted in this region – is enhanced by routing on a plot of 2,000 square metres, enhancing the natural ventilation of the spaces. 200 square meters of useful space for housing is arranged with an open plan kitchen, living room, dining room, outdoor terraces, service areas, a study, a bedroom and a full bathroom on the ground floor. All spaces are designed to offer a continuous visual dialogue with the ocean and mountains. On the other hand, it is connected to the upper floor through an external staircase that leads to the master bedroom. The staircase is connected to the house, covered with a brick grid that creates – also thanks to its position perpendicular to the sun – a beautiful play of light and shade that accompanies the users towards the master bedroom.
With Casa Calafia, RED Arquitectos confirms it Great interest in the local context In every aspect of the design, from the materials to the visual connections emphasized by the architectural language made up of circles, arches and inverted arches. “A building that can be seen and seen through and with the landscape”The project, as the architects describe it, is a place that is in perfect harmony with the local context.Christian Burklin
Project: RED Arquitectos
Location: Todos Santos, Baja California Sur, Mexico
Photos: Miguel Calancini