isla architects has created a colorful and warmly inviting retreat from which to enjoy spain‘s largest balearic island. situated within santa maría del camí, mallorca, the project began within an unfinished structural skeleton, which the architects have turned into ‘lover’s house’. drawing from local arab influences and the work of spanish architect jose antonio coderch, the design strives to connect to the rugged landscape while blending into it.
images by luis díaz díaz
the brief from the client was to create a place to enjoy the island while designing a house that would stand out on the local real estate market. in response to this challenge, isla architects began with a single-story layout that makes reference to the style of jose antonio coderch; ‘the house program is developed on several axes that are articulated along a series of walls arranged in a north-south direction,’ explain the architects. these layered axes serve to delimit the different functions of the program and extend the architecture into the land.
upon approaching the house, a winding path leads residents through a wild garden to the covered entrance porch. on this elevation the house is designed to appear ‘totally closed, recreating the local arab influences’, say the architects. a large floor-to-ceiling door made from wood pivots open to welcome inhabitants inside the warm interior.
from the entrance, the residents’ eyes are lead straight to the large dining and living area at the back of the rear of the house. this space marks the widest bay of the floor plan and opens out to a generous terrace, which then leads to a gorgeous and secluded pool.
the rest of the program is arranged within the two slimmer bays. in the south wing of the middle bay, there are two twin bedrooms with a shared bathroom, and the main bedroom, which opens south to a large open patio with a concrete bench. in the same bay but to the north side, the kitchen can be found, which is physically separated but visually connected to the main living room. it also boasts its own patio with views of the twin mountains of alaró.
the first bay of the house, located next to the entrance porch, contains a guest bedroom, shower room, and its own patio. to give a subtle distinction between the guest and main volume of the residence, isla architects has inserted a long courtyard in between them, where a forest of bamboo is trapped between two long walls.
designboom | architecture & design magazine