18th Century House Renovation in Mesao Frio, Portugal by SAMF Arquitectos | Yellowtrace

18th Century House Renovation in Mesao Frio, Portugal by SAMF Arquitectos | Yellowtrace

18th Century House Renovation in Mesao Frio, Portugal by SAMF Arquitectos | Yellowtrace

18th Century House Renovation in Mesao Frio, Portugal by SAMF Arquitectos | Yellowtrace

18th Century House Renovation in Mesao Frio, Portugal by SAMF Arquitectos | Yellowtrace

18th Century House Renovation in Mesao Frio, Portugal by SAMF Arquitectos | Yellowtrace

18th Century House Renovation in Mesao Frio, Portugal by SAMF Arquitectos | Yellowtrace

 

What do you do when you’re approached to integrate a design that started somewhere in the 18th century, was partially burnt down in the 50’s and now requires a series of new buildings to be constructed… not to mention an overhaul of the existing structures and some sort of way to integrate the entire lot so it reads as seamless and cohesive?

One might be tempted to employ the services of a demolition ball over that of an architectural practice. However the owners of “Quinta da Boavista” decided on the later over the former, employing the architects, SAMF Arquitectos. Situated on the Douro River in Portugal, over looking the sinuous valley, this wine producing estate is both a family retreat as well as a business, guesthouse enterprise.

SAMF Arquitectos took the bull by the horns and addressed the complex circulation issues strategically. They closed the L shape of the two original buildings with the addition of another building creating a ‘U shape’ with a central courtyard and an open portico that frames the river view. Rather than go about creating a strong contrast between the old and new, instead they set about selecting elements that were unique about the buildings and landscape and to intensify that dynamic.

 

Related Post: SAMF Arquitectos’ Reinterpretation of a Traditional Portuguese Farmhouse.

 

18th Century House Renovation in Mesao Frio, Portugal by SAMF Arquitectos | Yellowtrace

18th Century House Renovation in Mesao Frio, Portugal by SAMF Arquitectos | Yellowtrace

18th Century House Renovation in Mesao Frio, Portugal by SAMF Arquitectos | Yellowtrace

18th Century House Renovation in Mesao Frio, Portugal by SAMF Arquitectos | Yellowtrace

18th Century House Renovation in Mesao Frio, Portugal by SAMF Arquitectos | Yellowtrace

 

They kept the character of the interiors familiar irrespective of the major alterations the estate underwent. Implementing materials that were already unique to the space, such as stucco walls, wooden floors, hand made cement and glazed tiles, wooden trellis and a pervading deep blue that is found on all of the joinery, architraves and doors gave what otherwise might have felt like a mish-mashed collection of buildings a sense of unity.

In the new build, the length of the building forming the new ‘U side’, the architects designed the building based on its relationship to the landscape rather than it’s relationship to the existing buildings.

The main addition is a continuation of the original stonewalls, whitewashed in the local tradition. New openings were made in order to encourage a more direct relationship with the outside space. Large windows, access to terraces and covered porticos all offered new ways to express a connection to the land.

In keeping with the Portuguese tradition of Moorish origins, the architects designed all of the openings to be capable of being obscured if so desired. Blatant transparency was not the objective, rather they wanted to provide a capacity to view what the occupant chooses to enjoy without being seen.

 

 


[Images courtesy of SAMF Arquitectos. Photography by José Campos.]

 

About The Author

Susanna McArdle
Contributor

Susanna has a background in Interior Architecture and a passion for writing. Based in Sydney, she has worked both in Asia and Australia designing. An avid writer, it’s hard to know what she prefers more, stringing words together or creating spaces. But one thing she does know, is that she loves doing the both together.

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