Project: El Refugio House
Architects: Pedro Moncayo Torres arquitectura
Lead Architects: Pedro Moncayo Torres, Tatiana Pérez
Design Team: Pedro Moncayo Torres, Doménica Bustamante, Omar Moncayo
Location: Tarqui, Ecuador
Area: 1884 ft²
Photo credits: Nicolás Provoste C.
El Refugio House, located in the Southern countryside of Cuenca, Ecuador, is a rest space in connection with nature. The project, situated on a farm, generates a personal space for a reduced family group.’
The approach to the site starts from a second-order road, from which a first perspective is generated that highlights the topography and the impressive endemic forest. The project doesn’t look forward to challenging the landscape but to being part of it through its materiality and volumetric proposal.
The constructive system, based on the vernacular architecture, besides being a link between the morphological contemporaneity of the project with the majesty of the landscape, proves its appropriateness. The local stone walls, the artisanal bricks on the floors, and the roof made with wooden structure, reed cane, and clay roof tiles give thermal balance to the shelter that mitigates the climatology conditions of the zone.
The program, developed in 175m2, is organized into two primary volumes. The first block hosts the social area, including a porch as a transition element between nature and the house. The second element, located in the back zone for privacy reasons, contains the restroom.
The division between volumes generates a third zone that constitutes the heart of the project, the kitchen, and the barbecue. This space brings back the primitive hut concept, where the fire is the center of social activities.