Located in the Yucatán capital of Mérida, a stone’s throw from the popular beaches of the Gulf of Mexico, the indoor-outdoor house honors the preservation of the flora by literally arranging itself around the 80-year-old trees.
At 390 square meters, the detached house is based on what was once a plantation, situated in a public space with no fences. When passing through the area on foot, members of the community are encouraged to stop and enjoy the view of the pich trees, the “protagonists” of the project. Nonetheless, privacy is not an issue for the residents, as the intelligent use of varying height levels and vegetation guarantees some concealment where needed.
Rather than to privatize space as almost all homes do, Casa Del Arbol’s design is centered around trust, sharing, and promoting coexistence. The largest of the pich trees is framed by an outdoor porch, connecting the open area with the more private interior spaces. Due to its L-shaped geometry, all indoor rooms are afforded pich tree views, except the master bedroom which instead opens out to an exclusive patio. “We believe in the search of a human and contemporary architecture that is respectful to the place and time in which it is located”, say the architects of the design. This is why the house is placed where it is; to donate a green space to the neighborhood. “Ser para servir”, add the architects, quoting the Latin philosophy: ‘Be to serve’.
All images © Onnis Luque