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  1. ArchDaily
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  3. Houses
  4. Costa Rica
  5. SPG Architects
  6. 2009
  7. Casa Torcida / SPG Architects

Casa Torcida / SPG Architects

  • 01:00 - 4 September, 2010
Casa Torcida / SPG Architects
Casa Torcida / SPG Architects, © Charles Lindsay
© Charles Lindsay

© Charles Lindsay © Charles Lindsay © Charles Lindsay © Charles Lindsay +39

  • Architects

  • Location

  • Architects

    SPG Architects
  • Project Team

    Caroline N. Sidnam, Eric A. Gartner, Andres Cova, John Hudson
  • General Contractor

    Sergio Camacho De Pass
  • Area

    18000.0 ft2
  • Project Year

    2009
  • Photographs

From the architect. In 2005, SPG Architects was approached by our client to re-consider the incomplete structure that he had previously erected on a remote Costa Rican coastal hillside. The all-but-abandoned steel framework and concrete slab construction was being reclaimed by the forest yet the prior investment in time, materials, and money was considerable. Although the structure was beautifully sited, it needed considerable re-thinking to become a viable and beautiful home. As architects we were convinced that salvaging the existing structure was not only feasible but also the right thing to do, for both the client and the environment. The dual concerns of accommodating the needs of the client and preserving the natural landscape shaped the design and construction process from that point forward.

© Charles Lindsay
© Charles Lindsay

With footings, frame, and slab already in place, the greatest impact on the rain-forested site, which overlooked the Pacific Ocean, had already taken place before SPG Architects’ work began. The existing geometry required minor reconfiguration of the perimeter to improve the massing and use of the house. Sheer walls, bracing, and enhanced connections were required to reinforce the frame for seismic activity. Neither of these activities further degraded the site.

© Charles Lindsay
© Charles Lindsay

Further impact on the site was reduced by the decision to make the house self-sufficient in terms of energy and water use. This both eliminated the considerable expense of running electrical lines 18 km from the nearest town and avoided the inevitable suburbanization of this sparsely populated coastal area that doing so would have risked. Upon completion, this house had the largest domestic solar array (18.4 kW) in Costa Rica, which provided enough energy for lighting, appliances, and miscellaneous equipment. In the future, this solar-derived power will also provide for the needs of a complete and state-of-the-art recording studio, for which space has been designated at the ground level.

© Charles Lindsay
© Charles Lindsay

The solar panels, both photovoltaic and hot water, sit on a reflective & insulating, chemically inert & microbial-free, ceramic-based roof coating that both minimizes solar heat-gain and provides a clean source of water for the house and the pool. Roof water collects in a 75,000-gallon cistern, precluding the need for well water and eliminating any impact on the water table. No air-conditioning is required since natural cross breezes are exploited to maximize comfort in each room. The house incorporates movable and adjustable louvered and screened panels in each living space and movable glass walls that allow the rooms to fully open so that indoors is completely merged with the outdoors.

© Charles Lindsay
© Charles Lindsay

Cabinetry was locally fabricated from trees originally harvested from the foundation area and all materials were locally sourced whenever possible. High-efficiency appliances, light fixtures, and plumbing fixtures all contribute to the environmentally responsible approach to co-existing with nature in this very 21st century home. Casa Torcida provides all the comforts that the client required, making it clear that a well-considered resource-responsible approach does not preclude a commodious design that is visually appealing and functionally uncompromised.

© Charles Lindsay
© Charles Lindsay
Cite: "Casa Torcida / SPG Architects" 04 Sep 2010. ArchDaily. Accessed . <http://www.archdaily.com/75687/casa-torcida-spg-architects/>
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32 Comments

Unverified · March 20, 2012

@anouchkabeukens I have a plan for us to go back. Well, you go back & me for the 1st time. We need a lot of $$$ though. http://t.co/YIyFNm7C

Unverified · March 19, 2012

I found our new home, @_MissNatiG. Pack your bags. Or don&#39t. We can live naked in here. http://t.co/YIyFNm7C

Aman Playboy · March 04, 2012

Casa Torcida / SPG Architects | ArchDaily http://t.co/yYmFXJDm via @archdaily

Ivan L · September 26, 2010

Got House? Casa Torcida / SPG Architects | ArchDaily http://t.co/NGbR9dZ via @archdaily

o0 · September 11, 2010

Architecture: Casa Torcida by SPG Architects [Pictures] - http://bit.ly/9swaru (via @archdaily) #design #architecture

Del Mar Designs · September 09, 2010

RT @TheModernFanCo: SPG Architects bring low impact modern architecture to a remote Costa Rican coastal hillside… MFCo. Ball fans galore! http://tiny.cc/7k6gz

Modern Fan Company · September 09, 2010

SPG Architects bring low impact modern architecture to a remote Costa Rican coastal hillside… MFCo. Ball fans galore! http://tiny.cc/7k6gz

metrik studio · September 08, 2010

Reading: "Casa Torcida / SPG Architects | ArchDaily"( http://twitthis.com/vy8a6o )

Michael Baugus · September 08, 2010

Costa Rican beauty- Casa Torcida / SPG Architects | ArchDaily http://bit.ly/b0h80H

Jennifer Rector · September 08, 2010

Beautiful! Nice work @SPG_architects >> Casa Torcida / SPG Architects | ArchDaily http://t.co/ZzVVto4 via @archdaily

Jennifer Rector · September 08, 2010

Beautiful! Nice work @SPGarchitects >> Casa Torcida / SPG Architects | ArchDaily http://t.co/ZzVVto4 via @archdaily

SPG Architects · September 08, 2010

Check out the latest online coverage of Casa Torica!
http://www.archdaily.com/75687... http://fb.me/x77z5t8Y

SPG Architects · September 08, 2010

Check out the latest online coverage of Casa Torica!
http://www.archdaily.com/75687... http://fb.me/x77z5t8Y

Jakup · September 07, 2010

Amazing! I want a house just like this.

thomas foral · September 06, 2010

Casa Torcida / SPG Architects | ArchDaily http://t.co/f8N5nlh via @archdaily

analia · September 06, 2010

what a getaway - the view, the colors - a great save!

Yojhanny Arce Vindas · September 06, 2010
ASphere · September 06, 2010

i like how it open to the outside

not just the fashionable white cube

Knut Eric Wingsch · September 05, 2010

Casa Torcida, Osa Peninsula, Costa Rica / SPG Architects http://fb.me/EmFDAnZd

Vitor Domingos · September 05, 2010

take note for future house; Casa Torcida / SPG Architects on ArchDaily - http://goo.gl/svXF

up_today_arch · September 05, 2010

Separate paradise:)... perfect view from top terrace... It looks like white sculpture in wild forest...:)

pacogutiglez · September 05, 2010

RT @archdaily: Casa Torcida / SPG Architects http://archdai.ly/bAz99F #architecture

Bethany Seawright · September 05, 2010

The bookcases are just one of the things I love about this light-filled, thoughtfully green-designed home in Costa Rica http://bit.ly/atzPV1

Jason Strong · September 05, 2010

Like this night shot. You actually see architecture instead of just lights on in the windows http://archdai.ly/bAz99F RT @archdaily

Architecture+Molding · September 04, 2010

Casa Torcida / SPG Architects: Architects: SPG Architects Location: Osa Peninsula, Costa Rica Project Team: Caroli... http://bit.ly/ax60GY

Mario Yañez · September 04, 2010

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GraphicVision · September 04, 2010

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Architekt R V Scholz · September 04, 2010

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Fidear Morina · September 04, 2010

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Fidear Morina · September 04, 2010

RT @archdaily: Casa Torcida / SPG Architects http://archdai.ly/bAz99F #architecture

Bocetos Digitales · September 04, 2010

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DEZIGN · September 04, 2010

Casa Torcida / SPG Architects: © Charles LindsayArchitects: SPG Architects Location: Osa Peninsula, Costa Rica Pro... http://bit.ly/der5Qy

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