Location: Leiria, Portugal
Architect: Aires Mateus , Manuel Aires Mateus
Completion date: 2010
Photographs: Fernando Guerra
Text provided by the architects:
The site is on the outskirts of Leiria, in a high position overlooking the city. The functions are banal: a house divided into private areas with bedrooms and social areas with living-rooms. The private areas are at street level under the plot, around a central courtyard with rooms opening to private patios in an intimate environment. The living rooms are around a void, that collects light from above and gazes at the castle at the city center.The house is a recognizable archetype emptied of its center by the light designed by a three heightened courtyard that opens horizontally at the garden level. The bedroom courtyards, revealed in the garden, relate with this archetypal object providing different readings on its scale. Scale and volume are controlled in a chaotic context, with a clear identity that from its core relates to the historical legacy far away: the Leiria Castle.