The Medanos Summer House, conceptualized by Besonias Almeida Architects, is nestled at kilometer 427 of Provincial Route N° 11, just 10 km south of Villa Gesell and a short 3 km distance from the lush Mar Azul forest. This location is part of “El Salvaje”, a serene maritime farm development recognized for its environmental sustainability, low population density, and stringent adherence to environmental conservation regulations.
Every development within its domain is obligated to respect the natural topography, vegetation, and wildlife. The landscape, a vast Pampean plain, is interrupted by sandy ridges and grasslands, extending all the way to the coastal beaches. Despite enduring strong winds that sometimes reach 100 km/h, this austere yet captivating setting was chosen for the Medanos Summer House project. The house was designed not merely to withstand the elements but to embrace them.
Medanos Summer House Technical Information
- Architects: Besonias Almeida Architects
- Location: El Salvaje, Villa Gesell, Buenos Aires, Argentina
- Topics: Concrete in Architecture
- Groos Area: 167 m2
- Project Year: 2022
- Photographs: © Hernán de Almeida
This vast, homogeneous landscape, swept by strong winds, exposed to the harsh rays of the sun, almost uninhabited, which invites us to enjoy the silence and amazing sunsets, was the one chosen by the client to commission us the project of a small summer house with a generous swimming pool. And it was also the one that allowed us to develop an interesting experience by recognizing it as the main trigger of the proposal.– Besonias Almeida Architects
Medanos Summer House Photographs
Text by the Architects
El Salvaje is located at km 427 of Provincial Route N° 11, 10 km south of Villa Gesell and a mere 3 km from the Mar Azul forest. It is a development of maritime farms, environmentally sustainable both for its low population density and the conditions established by its regulations pertaining to environmental care. The legislation mandates that all developments must respect the topography, vegetation, and wildlife of the area, a geography where the flatness of the Pampean plain is interrupted by sandy ridges, stabilized by grasslands, that run perpendicular to the coast until they disappear into vast beaches.
The territory is subjected to strong winds for most of the year. Without alterations to its ecosystem to dampen them—like the pine plantations so common on this coast—it withstands gusts that occasionally reach 100 km/h.
This expansive, homogeneous landscape, swept by strong winds, exposed to the harsh sun rays, and almost uninhabited, invites us to enjoy the silence and stunning sunsets. It was chosen by the client to commission our project of a small summer house with a generous swimming pool. It also allowed us to develop an interesting experience by recognizing it as the primary driver of the proposal.
The first decision in the project was to locate the house in the highest area of the lot to fully appreciate the landscape admired by the owner. We established a route from the street through a pergola and a staircase that, ascending the dune, gives access to two platforms at different heights: one connects to the pool area, and the other outlines the development plan of the entire house and its expansion into a generous gallery.
Once situated on this level that overlooks the landscape, it was necessary to shield the house from the strong winds from the SE and N—sometimes so strong that the sand whips the glass and wears it down. We proposed a volume that recedes into an inner courtyard, protected from the strong winds and the intense summer sun by screens made of adjustable wooden boards on three sides, and opens completely to the landscape on the side with the best orientation.
This courtyard is the organizing space of the house. Interspersed between the sector that houses the social activities and the more private two bedrooms with their bathrooms, it can serve as an extension of these spaces on windy days and a connection to the upper terrace on calm days. Moreover, the light that bathes it creates ever-changing shadows that, combined with the different reflections from the glass box surrounding it, create a spatial situation of great interest.
Simultaneously, on hot summer days, the introduction of this courtyard, the positioning of the openings, and the creation of a deep gallery along the entire social sector of the house allow for a current of air to flow through all the rooms, cooling them, and for all the activities of the house to interact with each other and the exterior.
From the gallery and also from the upper terrace, one can enjoy views of the swimming pool nestled in the soft sand dunes and the ever-changing spectacle of sunsets.
At night, the house preserves its intimacy thanks to the wooden filters, and as a surprising outcome, the light that filters through them illuminates the immediate surroundings, producing varied effects of light and shadow.
Medanos Summer House Plans
Medanos Summer House Image Gallery
About Besonias Almeida Architects
Besonias Almeida Arquitectos is a renowned architectural firm based in Buenos Aires, Argentina. The firm is known for its minimalist and modern design aesthetic, often integrating nature and the surrounding environment into their designs. It was founded by María Victoria Besonías and Guillermo de Almeida, both of whom have been recognized with multiple awards for their innovative and impactful architectural work.
- Design and Project Management: Arch. María Victoria Besonías, Arch. Guillermo de Almeida
- Collaborator: Arch. Micaela Salibe, Arch. Candela Barrios, Hernán de Almeida