An angular concrete house in Celorico de Basto, Portugal focuses on glazing and maximising beautiful courtyard areas from which to enjoy the landscape. Designed by Portuguese architect Hugo Pereira, the home aims to make an impact, without impacting the landscape.
Known as Cork Oak House, this home gets its name from the dynamic landscape it sits within, overlooked by trees of this variety stretching out toward the horizon. The conditions of the hilltop site informed architect Pereira’s decision to leave as much of the surrounding area intact in order for visitors to feel immersed in the home’s surroundings.
While the majority of the home is comprised of only one floor, the larger visual is made up of this block intersecting with a second concrete volume, with slopes within each element giving the home the impression of reaching up from the ground itself. Focusing on clean lines and this sloping element allows the architect to design a comfortable, modern space without taking emphasis away from the environment in which it sits.
Floor-to-ceiling glazing allow for an abundance of daylight throughout the space, and while many homes in similar settings focus on bright, white surfaces, the architect in this project decided to go in a different direction. Creating a rather welcome contrast to the soft rolling hills, wide-reaching views from the roof and the airy interior layout, stark, darker materials elevate the home.
Black floor tiles create a harmonious relationship between the interior spaces and the two external patios, while dark tinted paving complements both the wood in the exterior and the interior furniture. Focusing on these darker materials does not, however, distract in any way. In fact, the dark tones create harmony between exterior cladding and interior, and allow the home to slope up humbly, continuing the line of the hillside without breaking visual harmony.