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Tue 19.11.

Three Cusps Chalet by Tiago do Vale Architects (PT)

Posted by Walter Phillips on 19.11.2013 - Tagged as: , ,

Three Cusps Chalet by Tiago do Vale Architects, photo: João Morgado

Three Cusps Chalet by Tiago do Vale Architects, photo: João Morgado

Three Cusps Chalet is a compact house renovation in the historical city center of Braga in Portugal in what was once the spartan kitchen, laundry, larders and personnel quarters of a small palace built by wealthy Brazilian emigrants in the second half of the 19th century.

 

 

Three Cusps Chalet by Tiago do Vale Architects, photo: João Morgado

Three Cusps Chalet by Tiago do Vale Architects, photo: João Morgado

“Built according to the devised model of an alpine chalet, so popular in 19th century Brazil (with narrow proportions, tall windows, pitched roofs and decorated eaves), the ‘Three Cusps Chalet’ was that one building.” says the architects Tiago do Vale. “Due to the confluence of such particular circumstances it’s quite likely the only example of a common, spartan, 19th century building of Brazilian ancestry in Portugal.”

 

Three Cusps Chalet by Tiago do Vale Architects, photo: João Morgado

Three Cusps Chalet by Tiago do Vale Architects, photo: João Morgado

“The program asked for the cohabitation of a work studio and a home program. Given the reduced area of the building, the original strategy of hierarchizing spaces by floor was followed. The degree of privacy grows as one climbs the staircase. The stairs also get narrower with each flight of steps, informing the changing nature of the spaces it connects.”

 

Three Cusps Chalet by Tiago do Vale Architects, photo: João Morgado

Three Cusps Chalet by Tiago do Vale Architects, photo: João Morgado

“A willingness to ensure the utmost transparency throughout the building, allowing light to cross it from front to front and from top to bottom, defined all of the organizational and partitioning strategies resulting in a solution related to a vertical loft.”

 

Three Cusps Chalet by Tiago do Vale Architects, photo: João Morgado

Three Cusps Chalet by Tiago do Vale Architects, photo: João Morgado

“The design team took advantage of a 1,5 m height difference between the street and the block’s interior plaza to place the working area on the ground level, turning it westward and relating it to the street. Meanwhile, the domestic program relates with the interior plaza and the morning light via a platform that solves the transition between kitchen and exterior. This allows for both spaces to immediately assert quite different personalities and light, even though they are separated by just two flights of stairs.”

 

Three Cusps Chalet by Tiago do Vale Architects, photo: João Morgado

Three Cusps Chalet by Tiago do Vale Architects, photo: João Morgado

“The staircase geometry, previously closed in 3 of its sides, efficiently filters the visual relations between both programs while still allowing for natural light to seep down from the upper levels and illuminate the working studio.”

 

Three Cusps Chalet by Tiago do Vale Architects, photo: João Morgado

Three Cusps Chalet by Tiago do Vale Architects, photo: João Morgado

“The second floor was kept for the social program of the house. Refusing the natural tendency for compartmentalizing, the staircase was allowed to define the perimeters of the kitchen and living room, creating an open floor with natural light all day long. Light enters from the kitchen in the morning, from the staircase’s skylight and from the living room in the afternoon.”

 

Three Cusps Chalet by Tiago do Vale Architects, photo: João Morgado

Three Cusps Chalet by Tiago do Vale Architects, photo: João Morgado

“If the visual theme of the house is the white color, methodically repeated on walls, ceilings, carpentry and marble, the clothing room is the surprise at the top of the path towards the private areas of the house. Both the floor and roof structure appear in their natural colors surrounded by closet doors constructed in the same material. It reads as a small wooden box, a counterpoint to the home’s white box and being itself counterpointed by the marble box of the bathroom.”

 

TECHNICAL SHEET

 

ARCHITECTURE: Tiago do Vale Architects, Portugal
LOCATION: Sé, Braga, Portugal
CONSTRUCTION: Constantino & Costa
PROJECT YEAR: 2012
CONSTRUCTION YEAR: 2013
SITE AREA: 60 m2
CONSTRUCTION AREA: 165 m2

 

to the Tiago do Vale Architects website

 

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