Architecture and Design Obsession
ecuadorian architect sebastián mora has transformed an old flower warehouse into ‘casa galpón’, a country family residence in azuay, ecuador. located in the yunguilla valley, a well-known area for its exuberant nature, the owners decided to build the house on the site where a plantation once operated. since the existing structure was in good condition, they decided to renovate the warehouse and adapt it to its new function.all images courtesy of nicolás provoste fotografía
sebastián mora sought to enhance the unobstructed views towards the valley and to respect the pre-existing structure. the design challenge was to modify the construction to the varied climate of the area, with very hot seasons and others with rain, fog, and humidity. the solution that came up was a coating for the walls that supports isolation for the interior. with this in mind, a curtain steel skin has clad the construction generating a chamber to protect it from weather changes.
the original morphology of the warehouse is maintained, while the eaves were removed to create a monolithic form. a metal pergola welcomes the facade with a jacuzzi and a sun deck beneath. ‘casa galpón’ features six bedrooms, a living room, dining room, kitchen, pantry, laundry room, a cellar, a workshop, and a barbecue area that is connected to the aforementioned pergola.
the building took form under the intention of recycling materials. the inhabitants had recently sold a house, from which they utilized the kitchen furniture, as well as interior for the living room, dining room, and bedrooms. furthermore, bricks —acquired from a house that was being demolished— were used to separate the social area from the laundry and storage area.
the original roof was maintained, and an insulated sheet was placed over it to restrict the high summer temperatures and the noise produced by the rain. all the materials used on the exterior are of low maintenance and have the virtue of aging well, holding good humidity resistance, and assuming the passage of time with dignity. to utilize the double height of the warehouse building, a mezzanine was placed on top of the bedrooms, featuring a living room and a guest room. meanwhile, the kitchen hood and chimney were fabricated on-site from steel panels, while the concrete floor was polished and sealed with an acrylic coating.
name: casa galpón
architect: sebastián mora
location: cuenca, ecuador
constructed area: 320sqm (3,445 sqft)
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edited by: christina petridou | designboom