NEST House designed by Gerardo Ars Arquitectura . Located in Alvarado, Veracruz, Mexico.
Designed for a retired couple and their growing family who longed for a refuge that would offer respire from the city, with ample spaces for recreation and gardening. The inspiration for this house emerged between the combinations of two cultures; Chiapas, the state where the couple were born, and Veracruz a city they love and have built a life for themselves and their children.
The house is located on a hill, in a gated community “Playas del conchal” with an exceptional view of the Gulf of Mexico in the town of Alvarado, Veracruz. Mexico.
The plot is very regular with an interesting drop of 1.2 m from side to side and front to back, which led us to design a gradual change in the levels seeking a delicate flow between the spaces on the first floor. The idea was that the gardens surround the house, so the living room, dining room, and guest bedroom offers a view of them.
While entering the house is impossible not to see a dividing wall (coral wall) between the living room and the dining room, inspired by a coral that grows from floor to the ceiling, which references one of the dividing walls of the first houses that couple lived when they were young, located in the city of Tuxtla Gutierrez Chiapas.
Security and privacy without sacrificing the privileged view were the most important requirements made by the owners, so we developed on the second floor an irregular layout that ensured a good view from multiple direction so that the master bedroom can see the sunrise and the sea while the other two bedrooms have views to the landscape.
The sun and the wind were important factors to consider during the design process because Veracruz is a very windy city. The facade of the second floor is wrapped with a screen of perforated concrete that flows with the form of the house that acts as a filter, ensuring the occupants privacy and safety also helps to reduce the wind and the heat gain.
The design of the Screen pays tribute to an abstract interpretation of traditional textiles made by the indigenous community of Chiapas, with repetitive geometric shapes. The pattern designed to look like random provides those inside an unnoticeable look of what’s going on outside at the same time allowing daylight to wash the interior of the balcony and the bedrooms creating a luminous atmosphere and an interface between interior and exterior.
The owners are hammocks lovers, so we designed a rooftop terrace with a special covered area for hammocks, the holes of the roof are not just for aesthetics but also were made by the shape of “pumpos” a typical fruit of Chiapas, so when the family enjoy the hammocks could remember a bit of its culture.
This is a house that manages to embrace and reinterpret the culture, as well as addressing modernity and the requirements of contemporary living with meticulous design resolutions.
Photos by Gerardo Robles.