One day, a project : Casa Rural by Cristobal Vial Arquitectos

Cristobal Vial Decombe casa rural
Photography by Cristobal Vial Decombe

In a confined daily life, we realize how important our living spaces can be. Houses and apartments reveal their defects when we stay in them for several weeks / months for health reasons. Naturally optimistic, I like to imagine that this epidemic will push some real estate professionals to consider more qualitative living spaces.

So for days on end, I’ve been browsing blogs and specialized sites, taking an interest in our contemporary living spaces. Surprisingly, I stumbled upon a lot of projects for sumptuous houses. Huge surfaces, expensive materials, large bay windows overlooking infinity pools. In short, everything that makes you dream in these times of confinement, but which, to be totally frank, remains well disconnected from me/reality.

Then I come across a pretty little 60m² holiday home. Roof with a double inverted slope (I’ve always had a weakness for that!), well-balanced interior and exterior spaces… That’s all it took to get me to write !

We’re heading to Chile, near Santiago in the coastal city of Mantazas. The ideal place for a bowl of hot air near the Pacific Ocean, for a weekend or a week’s vacation. The agency of Cristobal Vial Arquitectos gives us here a well woven project, mainly made of wood that seems to be carved for aperitifs and barbecues (yes my desires are primary).

The plan of the project is meant to be simple, but not simplistic. Set on a grid varying from 85 to 100 cm wide, this house on plots (it protects from snakes and other crawlers!) offers three independent terraces as well as three bedrooms and a small common living space. The double orientation and the slope of the roofs facilitate natural ventilation. They offer a beautiful natural light that warms the raw wood. So yes, this choice of “all wood” is likely to deteriorate over the years. But in this case, the unity of the material should offer interesting colour variations. I like the idea of a building that ages, that evolves.

The choice of wood slats and openwork posts adds an interesting play of light, allowing the house to do without all the other frills and develop its vocabulary on – almost – a single material. Shadow on the board, white PVC switches that stain. At least you can’t miss them !

In the end, this project was a bit of a breath of fresh air for me, a little Thursday morning treat that I hope you will enjoy as much as I do.

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