Arial M6 / Carbajo Barrios Arquitectos

Architects: Carbajo Barrios Arquitectos / Manuel Carbajo Capeans & Celso Barrios Ceide
Location: Santiago de Compostela, Spain
Construction Manager: Enrique Martinez
Render: Carlos Pascual Ayestarán – Artquimedia
Interior Design: Fatima Amo
Lighting: Tokonoma
Aditional Support: Santiago Interiores
Building Type: Mixed Use_ / Commercial / Office
Design year: 2007/2008
Construction year: 2008/2011
Size: 20,000 sqm
Project website: Grupo Arial


ARIAL M6 is a residential development comprising 78 flats of different characteristics distributed amongst five storeys and an attic along with ground floor premises meant for commercial use and a three-level basement garage. The building concludes with a private area destined for a garden and leisure activities, swimming pool and solarium.


ARIAL M6 is located in the Avenida da Liberdade, the main boulevard within Santa Marta, one of the expansion areas of the city of Santiago de Compostela.

This location allows for an unbound development, with wide spaces and limitless surrounding views, both in its front façade towards the boulevard as well as to the rear façade to which there are not adjacent constructions, but open spaces, greens and sporting facilities.

general plan 04

Architecture and design

Architects Manuel Carbajo and Celso Barrios have combined the needs of a residential development with an image far from the standards under which these usually fall. To this effect they have planned a fragmentised façade, comprising a crucible of solid and transparent, and light and dark, using glass as the main material.

The roof carries on the façade with the same materials, openings and finishing, ultimately becoming the solid framework. From the exterior this is perceived as highly attractive as it steers clear of the classic disconnection between façade and roof, but it is inside where unique spaces can be enjoyed such as split-level glass-covered lounges, which provide the duplexes with an outstanding effect of a single family home.

Hence one comes across a glass building, scattered with vertical and horizontal sheets of white , which far from intended for aesthetic purposes only, they have been conceived to create a sun protection mesh during the summer, still allowing the sunlight through during winter when the light incidence angle is minor.

Architecture and environment

This residential development makes use of clean energy by means of the installation of solar thermal panels on the roof destined to the contribution of hot sanitary water and heating. Furthermore, the energetic efficiency has been optimised with the installation of under-floor heating through hidden hot water pipes, as a result, the hot running water heats the floor whilst providing uniform and comfortable warmth throughout the home. There are multiple advantages to this heating system as it reduces energy consumption remarkably in comparison to the traditional radiator-based systems, with no heating power loss, avoiding dust carbonisation and allowing for each interior to be designed without having to take radiators into account.

The utilisation of glass in the façade and in the common areas for a better usage of natural light, the positioning of sun protection elements in the façade for the times of high exposure, water saving systems, the election of eco-efficient appliances and building materials whose production respects the environment are amongst the different aspects taken into account.

Exterior design

The façade comprises two main elements, namely: glass, whether transparent, translucent or opaque and vertical and horizontal sheets of white concrete, acquiring a solid and avant garde effect; efficient in relation to luminosity and sun protection as well as to maintaining the privacy within the home.

north elevation

A 1.300 plus square metre area contains the private outdoor area of the development and includes a swimming pool area and solarium paved with wood, green areas, children’s play area and even a partially roofed area for holding celebrations and events.

Interior design

A single access is considered from the outside, through which to reach the three lift halls via a glass corridor which runs parallel to the garden. This layout allows for a continuous and unified main façade as well as increased security, better deployed communication areas and outstandingly high use of natural light.
The same criteria are followed with the lift halls in which a continuous skylight has been planned from the first floor to the roof, a feature which provides spaciousness and natural light to areas commonly characterised for being enclosed and gloomy spaces. At the communication areas amongst the different homes one will find a colourful perspective, highlighting the entrance to each home through the lightning and the colours of the materials, consequently achieving an remarkable aesthetic effect.

Cite: Saieh, Nico. "Arial M6 / Carbajo Barrios Arquitectos" 14 Mar 2009. ArchDaily. Accessed 29 May 2015. <>
  • Nomads Architects

    Fuckin good renders !

  • mari

    with 3d max or c4d ?

  • Triangle

    I think it is Artlantis.

  • Nomads Architects

    mhmh i think 3dsmax

  • NMiller

    Nice developer project. The night lighting ideas bring the facade to life. However, I would like to see some accents of color on the exterior during the day… maybe something simple like color curtains or blinds within the units could give the building some extra life/depth.

    The lobby space is very elegant!

  • roadkill

    I am sorry to go against the grain but this project is quite boring. apart from some reasonable visuals, the whole scheme is just average at best and lazy at worst.

  • Nomads Architects

    To Roadkill :

    that’s why i’ve just written : nice renders :)

    A good example of how visualizations can enlight even a simple projets. Don’t forget that Visualisations are not Architecture.

    A scale model is always more interesting to understand a project

  • medusa

    It’s amazing how the industry of entertainment has invaded every aspect of our life… first, we discussed images, renders, and get excited or turned down by that…
    and then we judge buildings (As everything else) for how exciting they are… or boring… or interesting…

    then you remember those words by Mies…
    “I don’t want to be interesting. I want to be good”

  • Nomads Architects

    To Medusa :


  • Thomas

    You need good renders to sell a very bad project. Spain has gone to the dogs…

  • vibenade

    seriously..this is sooo cool! just love the facade treatment, i don’t think this project is all about the rendering,
    right scale, right treatment, simple finishing..just nice!

  • zarza

    Nice dialogue between concrete and glass. Simple, straightforward, effective. Light years ahead of developer mixed use residential in US.

  • Bès

    where is the dialogue with the urban fabric?

  • ucha

    it’s v-ray