Architects: OF Arquitectos
Location: Tunquen, Algarrobo, Valparaíso Region, Chile
Architect In Charge: Francisco Cepeda, Alvaro Ramirez
Project Architect: Nicolas Cabargas
Area: 140.0 sqm
Photographs: Marcos Mendizabal
Contractor: Luis Catalán
Engineering: Alex Popp
From the architect. Ensignia-Gerber House is located on a 5000m2 triangular ecological plot within Tunquen, 120km away from Santiago Chile. The project called for the design of a vacation home for a couple and their guests.
The strategies for the development of the project came from the dramatic conditions of the site context. The main ambition was to solve with a cohesive structure two opposite situations: On the one hand, follow through the slope towards the sea trying to find the stunning views of the North corner of the bay. On the other hand, distributing the programme perpendicularly to the slope, following the contour of the hill.
In order to achieve this, the project is located at the most elevated portion of the plot, increasing the view angles. The programme establishes two separated cores with one common skin. One is the main living area, and the other as an attached guest quarters, connected by a covered terrace, protected from the ‘Surazo’ (typical cold wind coming from South-West). The main area is supported on the hill, following the contours from East to West, and establishing a direct and close relation with the terrain. In contrast the other zone is projected towards the slope direction granting additional views to the North.
The exterior of the house is established, with different folds between the roof and the exterior walls, making a continuous surface with black stone cladding. The outer skin protects the house from the climatic conditions and avoids the exposure to the street. A closed south façade contains only two openings, which allow access to the entrance and a small courtyard between the master bedroom and the living room, while a fully opened face to the North and West takes advantage of the views of the Pacific Ocean.