With a hillside location offering panoramic views of Vale da Lama, in the Lagos area of the Algarve, Portugal, Casa Zauia by Mario Martins Atelier seems especially built for contemplation. The overall design of the residence was partially dictated by the building restrictions in the area; its final shape inspires lightness and modern simplicity: “The house seems to rise out of the ground and nestle in the landscape. However, due to the sloping nature of its physical support, it appears to be unattached and emerges on graceful pillars, reducing the effect of the natural vegetation growing under it”, explained the architects.
Resembling a white horizontal box, Casa Zauia opens up towards the surrounding landscape through long, continuous glazing. A south-facing terrace, protected from the powerful sun rays during the summer, offers opportunities for outdoor socializing. The layout of the house reinforces the idea of a contemporary shelter where family interaction is encouraged: “The one-level building and has four bedrooms with en suite bathrooms, toilet, kitchen with support areas, office and living room opening on to a spacious veranda/partly-covered patio, which is part of the front terrace adjoining all rooms. The pool, rectangular and elegant, is the continuation of a water mirror which pours out of the supporting wall made of exposed concrete.”