OMA House
by Sanz Arquitectos

Traditional houses, with their constructive simplicity achievable by local artisans, have thick walls and small openings. The simple prismatic geometry contributes to the preservation of heat generated by fireplaces and braziers in winter, and to the coolness of spaces in semi-shadow in summer. As a consequence, there is a somehow excessive introversion and a certain lack of light in these interiors.

Therefore, taking advantage of contemporary technology, the project focused on opening the house to the outside, generating visual relationships with the surrounding patios and gardens, and enhancing the entry of more natural light and cross ventilation. The original openings of the house have been extended to ground level, favouring both the entry of light and the visual communication between inside and outside through the continuity –which is very important– of ground plane level.

The project thus emerges from the pre-existence; from a collective memory expressed through the material and through the construction. Located in the town of Colmenarejo, in the foothills of the Sierra de Guadarrama near Madrid, the refurbished house designed for a friend couple had to adapt to a very different reality, preserving the heart of a home, based in the dialogue between the old and the new. Transformed into a space with a single bedroom, an attic recovered from the former garret, and a new annexed pavilion to be used as an office and a guest area, the house was conceived through a process of a selective erasure: a process in which the subtraction was more important than the addition.

The materialization of this idea had to take place through a rigorous differentiation between the old and the new. The traditional granite from the Sierra de Madrid was set off in contrast with the white cast-in-place concrete; the latter standing for an eloquent sign of what in the house belongs to our time. In contrast to this robustness, the more fragile filter and privacy elements were made of natural bamboo slats.

Upon completion, the once isolated construction of the house is now a building reconciled with is surrounding; a house with a fresh look on its garden, but also on the on the nearby landscape: a patio house.
Architects: Sanz Arquitectos
Location: Colmenarejo, Madrid, Spain
Client: Private
Date: 2020
Photography: Imagen Subliminal (Miguel de Guzmán + Rocío Romero)

Architects: Sanz Arquitectos

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Avenida de Manoteras 10, 314

Estudio profesional de arquitectura desde 1974 con importantes realizaciones en edificios INSTITUCIONALES, EMPRESARIALES, CULTURALES, DOCENTES, VIVIENDAS, entre otros, tanto de obra nueva como en rehabilitación, reformas, diseño urbano, interiorismo, mobiliario, paisajismo, etc.
Cuenta con cerca de 40 Premios y distinciones nacionales e internacionales entre Concursos de Proyectos y Premios de Instituciones a obra terminada.
José Manuel Sanz es el director del estudio, arquitecto por la Escuela Técnica Superior de Arquitectura de Madrid (ETSAM), Profesor de proyectos y Profesor de Master de postgrado. Numerosas publicaciones, exposiciones y conferencias en Universidades e Instituciones. Ha sido miembro de la Comisión de Cultura del Colegio Oficial de Arquitectos de Madrid (COAM) y jurado en diversos concursos y premios.