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House in Costa do Castelo by Bak Gordon Arquitectos


Architecture: Ricardo Bak Gordon

Collaboration: Ana Carolina Campos, Gonçalo Frias, José Pedro Cano, Luís Pedro Pinto, Nuno Costa, Pedro Pedro

Site location: Rua da Costa do Castelo, Lisboa

Client: Private

Contractor: Manuel Mateus Frazão Lda

Consultants: F&C (Landscape architecture), Betar (Foundations, Structures and Geological Survey), prom&E Consulting (Electrics, Telecommunications, Security, Acoustics and Mechanics), Campo d’ Água (Hydraulics)

Areas: 465m2 construction area

Date: Project 2013-15 [Works completion 2019]

Photographs: Francisco Nogueira

Rua Costa do Castelo is a road that surrounds the hill of Castelo de São Jorge at a level significantly lower than that of its walls, so the buildings that face onto the road often have green spaces behind their upper floors. The gardens, with sloping levels, cover the spaces between the built volumes and the walls of the castle to variable depths.

This project involves the construction of a completely new house with five floors above ground level, the last of which, the deepest, is set back from the line of the existing street curtain. The uniqueness of the building lies in its twofold nature. For the first four stories the house is aligned with facades of historic buildings while on the level of the fifth story it is transformed into an urban villa, morphologically unrestricted and made even more interesting by the open space that separates it from the other walls.

In section it is possible to appreciate the complexity of the layout and sequence of spaces from the covered loggia that contains the garage at street level. The sequence of rooms is laid out so that after the vestibule there is access to a study-library, then the bedrooms and finally to the most social zone in the house, on the garden level, with the kitchen, dining room and lounge opening onto the swimming pool. This is made more intimate by an accessible reinforced concrete slab which covers part of it, so turning it into a structure like a nymphaeum.

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