A Volcanic Rock House Seamlessly Disappears Into The Landscape

How do you make a house feel open and connected to its surroundings without actually exposing it to the outside world in the typical manner? The answer to this question stands at the core of a very special project which was completed in 2014 by architect Luis Arturo Garcia of EDAA. The architect was asked to design a house which would be able to seamlessly blend in with its natural surroundings and which would allow its inhabitants to be in touch with nature without sacrificing privacy. This became possible with the help of design features such as  large pivot doors and locally-sourced, natural materials.

The glass pivot door opens the living spaces to the outdoors without completely exposing themThe glass pivot doors open the living spaces to the outdoors without completely exposing themWhen the pivoting doors are open, all the charm and the beauty of the landscape rush inside and the living areas stay cozyWhen the pivoting doors are open, all the charm and the beauty of the landscape rush inside and the living areas stay cozyThe volcanic rock exterior walls contrast with the white roof, giving the house a lightweight appearanceThe volcanic rock exterior walls contrast with the white roof, giving the house a lightweight appearanceThe lap pool is almost level with the slope and features a large deck, the perfect spot or admiring the landscapeThe lap pool is almost level with the slope and features a large deck, the perfect spot or admiring the landscape

The house is built out of rough stone and concrete and has a low profile, being almost perfectly aligned with the slopes. The lap pool is at ground level which wouldn’t really be unusual if the house didn’t also have a basement level. The foundation and the main structural elements are made of concrete and some of the walls are built of volcanic rock. This selection of materials allowed the project to stay within budget and at the same time to establish a strong dialogue with its natural context. The materials age naturally and this helps the house blend with the landscape more seamlessly every day.

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Two large reservoirs ensure that the house gets sufficient water all year round. One is circular and openTwo large reservoirs ensure that the house gets sufficient water all year round. One is circular and open and collects the maintenance waterWhat's really cool about this house is that even when you're outdoors it still feels like you're inside, safe and cozyWhat’s really cool about this house is that even when you’re outdoors it still feels like you’re inside, safe and cozy
A private courtyard is actually a natural extension of the private volumesA private courtyard is actually a natural extension of the private volumesThe stone walls and light-colored roof let the house seamlessly blend in and disappear into the landscapeThe stone walls and light-colored roof let the house seamlessly blend in and disappear into the landscapeThe basement level in this case is actually the heart of the house and contains all the major functionsThe basement level in this case is actually the heart of the house and contains all the major functionsThe bedroom opens onto an enclosed courtyard with an open roof and hammocksThe bedroom opens onto an enclosed courtyard with an open roof and hammocksYou can see here the difference in floor levels between the volumesYou can see here the difference in floor levels between the volumesThe indoor-outdoor transition featured here is one of the most seamless ones we're seen The indoor-outdoor transition featured here is one of the most seamless ones we’re seenThe architecture and the design of the house are a perfect match for the location as well as for the tropical weatherThe architecture and the design of the house are a perfect match for the location as well as for the tropical weatherThe site and the house are both spectacular in their own simple and modest wayThe site and the house are both spectacular in their own simple and modest wayAlthough the house looks closed off from the outside, it actually has a very close relationship with the outdoorsAlthough the house looks closed off from the outside, it actually has a very close relationship with the outdoors

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