The site is located on the outskirts of Santa Maria da Feira, surrounded by a diffuse and changing landscape. The concept of the project comes from the combined interpretation of the functional program of a single-family house with the specific premises of the clients, as from the study of the characteristics of the lot and its surroundings and morphological conditions.
The house is organized in a single floor around a central courtyard, facing South and West, protected from the street on the North side. Shaped as an ‘L’, it is divided in two parts – a longitudinal volume organized the service areas and the leisure zone, while the bedrooms are located in the shorter volume, transversal to the lot. An additional volume, a storage room placed in the limit of the terrain, accurately defines the central courtyard.
Access to the house is made from the east side, by a ramp that serves as a transition between the level of the street and the main and service entrances. At the intersection of the two volumes of the L, a void announces the main entrance, that inward, through its transparency, reveals the central courtyard and leads to the different areas of the house.
The interior spaces are directly associated to the patio, though protected by the porch, that externally unifies the different areas of the house as intensifies the daily experiences of the family. The living room is an ample space, where the dining and living areas are commonly organized, spatially extending to the outdoor through natural light.
The volume, simple and compact, is coated by an opaque ventilated facade made of prefabricated black textured concrete panels on its public surfaces, whilst its interior walls, facing the private patio, are fully open through their transparency.
The background scenery of the courtyard and garden is framed by the ‘memory wall’, built out of stones from the demolition of pre-existence.
Location: Santa Maria da Feira, Portugal
Project: 2008 – 2009
Construction: 2010 – 2012
Architecture: Arquitectos Matos (Ricardo Matos, Nuno Matos)
Co-author: Luis Loureiro
Architecture Collaboration: Hugo Gomes
Photo credits: Joao Morgado – Architecture Photography