Casa Altinho Overlooks Lisbon Waterfront With Nestin Volumes Of Delicate Brickwork ♦ Antonio Costa Lima Arquitectos presents Casa Altinho, a project marked by its minimal, nesting geometries and expressive materiality. With consideration for its context, the house is named for its altitude — situated along the waterfront of Lisbon overlooking both the river and the lively streetscape of the Rua da Junqueira. Casa altinho is both walled off and outward-looking. As the first level turns inward away from the street, the second level opens outward with rhythmically staggered brickwork which allows occupants a vast perspective over the surrounding terracotta rooftops and the wide river beyond. Secrets From Portugal brings this amazing project, an amazing house in the centre of amazing Portugal capital.
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The site is called Altinho probably because of it’s on a higher level than the Rua da Junqueira which is mostly in a lower plan. From the little square, you can get a privileged view of the current Electricity Museum and the river.
The logistic nature of the building is related to the river nature of the city. It is integrated into the wide waste of manufacturing and logistics warehouses that spreads and swarm in an irregular line along the Tagus banks in streets like Junqueira, Pedrouços, Dom Luis I, Rua da Alfândega, Rua of the Tobacco Garden, Calçada de la Cruz de Pedra, Xabregas, etc.
The house is born of the confrontation of two archetypes – house vs. warehouse – confronting shapes, scales and materials. Thus, the house occupies the walled perimeter interspersing patio and terrace voids with fragmented volumes.
In the formal development of casa altinho, Antonio costa lima Arquitectos takes clear influence from the waterfront neighbourhood’s typical fabric buildings made up of warehouses together with private houses. The designs team maintains the original walled perimeter with respect to the intrinsic value of this typology in the context of junqueira and the city. In an interpretive confrontation of two archetypes — house versus warehouse — the team addresses traditional forms, scales and materiality. The houses ultimately occupy a heavy and austere wall interrupted with voids hosting patios and terraces.
The walled-off perimeter, suggestive of a protective shell, encloses a lattice-like volume of delicate brickwork. While the extruded profile of this element echoes that of a traditional house, its roofscape features sculptural and subtle folds as it traverses the length of the plot until it is capped with a full wall of glazing facing out to the river. Careful attention to detail results in such moments as barrel-vaulted ceilings illuminated by ambient light entering from an adjacent double-height space finished in rusticated stonework.