by GARCIAGERMAN ARQUITECTOS
The house lies adjacent to the plane-tree covered path, and can be understood as another pavilion along the way to the palace’s entrance sequence.
The Project is located in a rural enclave close to the village of San Vitores, a few kilometres away from the Atlantic Coast, and in the former grounds of the Torreánaz Palace. Once a grand property surrounded by a small settlement, the Torreanaz Palace lies at the end of a long plane-tree covered path leading to its gateway. Both the gateway and one of the palace’s stables, a detached pavilion, were designed by Spanish Regionalist architect Leonardo Rucabado in the late XIX century. The whole area constitutes a Protected Landscape, with listed historic constructions coexisting with traditional grazing activities.
The house lies adjacent to the plane-tree covered path, and can be understood as another pavilion along the way to the palace’s entrance sequence. As such pavilion, its typological and organizational layout is straightforward, and comes from a direct interpretation and miniaturization of those in the rural “casonas” or local country homes: a regular and compact gabled volume, slightly elevated from the slope and surface runoff, sun-oriented and whose proportions have been outlined to optimise cross-ventilation, without ignoring the need for certain bay depth in this oceanic climate. This volume is accompanied by a porticoed open sub-pavilion, dedicated to breakfast, dining and entertaining in good weather.
Colours, textures and materials balance traditional and industrial techniques, with exposed sanded-concrete bands giving way to artisanal white mortar surfaces. Roofs and the house’s West façade are finished in black zinc cladding, a solution which, besides offering a fine water-proofing, recalls nearby early XX century “indiano” houses.
Punctuated only by the entrance porch, the West façade is kept completely opaque as a protection towards prevailing westerly storms in autumn and winter, when rains hits almost horizontally for days on end. Meanwhile the North and South façades have a regular pattern of generous-sized openings, with jambs and lintels in local sandstone emphasizing the depth of walls.A single skylight above the double-height vestibule, which curls around a hanging metal staircase, introduces a cold and blue northern light inside the house.
Architectss: GARCIAGERMAN Arquitectos
Team: Jacobo García-Germán, Raquel Díaz de la Campa, Miguel López, Marta Roldán, Lidia de Lucas, Rocío Mazón, Paloma Mayor
Constructor: Fernandez Rosillo y Cia S.L.
Consultants: José Enrique Cacicedo
Location: Anaz, Santander, España
Photography: Imagen Subliminal (Miguel de Guzmán + Rocío Romero)
He has taught in Universidad Javeriana Bogotá (2007-2009), FebelCem Antwerp (2008), Lasalle Tarragona (2009), Escola da Cidade Sao Paulo (2010), Architecture Faculty Ljubljana (2010), Católica de Lima (2012), Escuela de Arquitectura de Pamplona (2012), and Camilo José Cela (2003) and UPSAM (2012) Universities in Madrid. He is co-founder of the Symmetries (symmetries.es) teaching platform for workshops & congresses; Split (2011), Rome (2012) and Lisbon (2012). He is Teaching Curator for Arquitectura Ibérica, Fundación Arquitectura y Sociedad (2012-).
After working in the office of Rafael Moneo (1998-2001), he established GARCIAGERMAN ARQUITECTOS (garciagerman.com) in 2003, an office devoted to the exploitation of practical opportunities connecting the fields of education and research with those of building activity. The office has obtained 14 national or international prizes and its built work has won Prizes in the Madrid Town Hall’s Architecture and Urbanisms Prizes in 2001 and 2007. Europan 9’s First Prize Nacka Rings project has been selected as one of the 28 best realizations of Young Spanish Architecture at the Arquía/Próxima Forum 2008. In 2009, the experimental housing project Prototipo Periférico Nº2 was selected for the European Union Prize for Contemporary Architecture – Mies van der Rohe Award 2009. The office’s work is currently exhibited in the Galería de Arquitectura El Croquis in El Escorial, Madrid, and has been included in different collective exhibitions.
Jacobo García-Germán has curated the exhibitions APFC-ASAP (Madrid ETSAM, 2010) and Madrid Arhitektura (Ljubljana T5 Project Space, 2010) presenting the collective academic results of his teaching activity. He has lectured in different forums and institutions worldwide and his texts and works have been published in specialised books and magazines (Oris, Verb-Actar, Arquitectura Viva, Arquitectos CSAE, Pasajes, CIRCO, On Diseño, AArchitecture, BAU…).