Country house in Algaida
Location: Algaida, Mallorca
Architects: isla (Juan Palencia) with Fidalgo Magro Arquitecto (Nelson Fidalgo Magro)
Team: Marta Colón de Carvajal, Vojtech Rada, Joan Pau Bujosa
Photos: Luis Díaz Díaz
This project had a peculiar starting point: It began at the same time as its construction. Once the license was granted, the client decided to change architect* and called us to rethink the project and provide a contemporary character that was lacking. The project had to work with a pre-imposed footprint of four interconnected volumes. The main house would evoke a Mallorcan vernacular house, while the adjacent volumes would be more abstract. The idea was to embrace and include the Mediterranean landscape of the site, in particular the delicate local garrigue, and to emphasize the backdrop offered by the Tramuntana mountain range, defining a skyline as a stage on which to develop the house.
The house in the garrigue
The rocks and stones from the excavation would be recovered and recomposed giving shape to the main house façade, in fact and by using not only the stones but also the excavation earth itself will integrate and blend the volume with the terrain. The obtained tone would also give color the locally prefabricated concrete elements, such as the window frames, cornices, and exterior floors and platforms, as well as the natural mortar of the auxiliary volumes.
Inside, the house can be experienced as a large open space, but it can also be divided into two clearly differentiated parts (one more public and the other more private) the physical separation can be obtained by the simple sliding of a large door panel.
Main space facing the kitchen
The main open space consists of a series of programmatic functions under a common wooden coffered ceiling: a large open kitchen, the dining room, and a living room facing the fireplace, and can be lived as both a family and social space, once receiving guests.
Main space facing the chimney
On the lateral side of the kitchen, a fitted wall contains the access to the pantry and laundry room, as well as the cupboards, the refrigerator, freezer, and a minibar. A stainless-steel island separates the kitchen from the dining room, which features a large solid oak table that seats 12 diners. At the east end, the living room is topped by a fireplace formed by a large piece of bent black steel. French windows open to both orientations, allowing permeability from the garden, cross ventilation, and views of the Tramuntana mountain and swimming pool area.
At the entrance, integrated in the volume of the staircase, hidden flush doors will give access to the guest water closet and to a cloak cabinet. Between the main house and the bedrooms, a communication space serves as an interface between the different areas. Three large windows separate the different volumes and visually frame the natural views and communicate with the outdoor space. The largest of these openings gains in depth to serve both as a bench and as place to stay, to enjoy the sun and the landscape, and as auxiliary storage.
The volume of the children's bedrooms has been designed so that it can evolve over time as they acquire more independence. The master bedroom, on the other hand, has a walk-in closet, and gives access to the bathroom through a fully mirrored front defining a small boudoir.
Custome made concrete stairs
The bathroom has a double shower in marble stone, and a single block custom made sink carved in the same stone.
Custom made marble sink
Upper bathroom with marble finishes
Custom made marble double sink
Custom concrete sink and copper faucets
On the exterior, the pool complex is understood as a series of floating pieces that emerge from the ground, separated from it by an expressive shadow line allowing the underneath growth and integration of the local vegetation, making the transition between the natural and the built more agreeable.
Access to the changing room and machinery room
Secondary entrance with a horse-step bench
The pool floats on the slight slope of the garrigue by means of large sandy precast concrete slates, and has as an associated underground program changing and technical rooms- which are accessed through a staircase that also emerges as a ring of the same prefabricated material. To top it all off, a shower basin floats between the existing trees. These pieces function in sequence, inviting the inhabitant to follow a path during the act of bathing.