- Structural Engineering: S3 INGENIEROS Ing. Ricardo Solano V.
- Electromechanical Engineering: CIRCUITO S.A. Ing. Gustavo Herrera Musmanni
- Interior Design: MU DESIGNS Muriel Haerens
- Landscaping: GREENGOGARDENS Steve Gordy
- Builder: FRAME PROJECTS Rémi Martin, Nicolas Huet
- Sustainable Systems: SWISSOL Guillermo Ramirez (sistema solar de agua caliente), CR SOLAR SOLUTIONS Ben Shalev (sistema eléctrico fotovoltaico), ELOY Nicolas Huet (tratamiento de agua y sistemas de gestión)
- Client: Toni Vandewalle
- Author Architect: John Osborne Odio
- Project Architects: Pablo Quiros Soto, Sasha Nash
- City: Tamarindo
- Country: Costa Rica
Text description provided by the architects. Villa Morabeza is a holiday house on the southern extreme of the beach Playa Tamarindo, located in the province of Guanacaste, Costa Rica. This zone of Costa Rica is part of an area of the country that is one of the aridest, affected by a marked dry season with a duration of a third of the year. The flora and fauna belong to the dry tropical forest and the region generally suffers from occasional droughts and scarcity of water. The house faces the beach and enjoys views of the sea and the mountains in the north, immersed in its gardens and the green areas of the residential area which it belongs to.
The house aims to integrate spaces that usually are individual or isolated, like in the case of a room, a bathroom, a toilet and an exterior terrace, or in the case of a living room, kitchen, dining room, entrance and exterior terrace. In this way, it manages to reduce the footprint of the spaces without making them feel small and to incorporate the exterior with the livable spaces. The system of construction of the house is non-traditional and consists of an integral structure of prefabricated profiles of cold-bent steel. This allows the construction to be very light and flexible, mounted on a structural slab that made it possible to explore flat roofs in a region where the norm is to mitigate the weather and the rains with steep slope roofs.
The house uses a series of systems to minimize the consumption of energy and resources, including a treatment plant for all the waters of the house, which is being redistributed underground to water a garden with low water consumption. It also employs a network of 114 photovoltaic panels in cogeneration with a grid power system with the local electric service company. For hot water, there is a hybrid system of solar panels with a back-up storage with LPG gas heating in case of low solar radiation. The materials used in the house are of industrial nature and the house is mostly built with cold rolled steel that is infinitely recyclable and of low cost.
Passive design was used to obtain cross ventilation and natural lighting in all of the interior spaces where the social space of kitchen-living room-dining room is not conditioned and opens to the exterior with its four sides. The new construction technologies and the industrial materials opened up the possibility to explore and to propose a reinterpretation of modern architecture in the dry tropics.