Ajuda House

This project consisted on the reinterpretation and rehabilitation of an old house, located in the Bairro das Casas Económicas do Alto da Ajuda, which was built in 1947 by the Portuguese Government as a response to the lack of housing in the country.
The original house is a repetition of a module, whose plan and facade mirror the neighboring houses, creating a very characteristic repetition in that neighborhood.
The client’s program included a house for a family of 5 people, with a garden and swimming pool, which would require an expansion of the building in length and height.
The current rules for rehabilitation in Lisboa, oblige at least the preservation of the front facade and any increase in height must respect the metric of the lower facade. Other than that, a lot of freedom is allowed in the interiors.

The House already had an Illegal addition to the kitchen, which fitted very well with the organization that was wanted for the new proposal and functioned as a barrier to the large wall of the neighboring house.

Keeping the original layout, even with the illegal addition of the kitchen, the house was divided into two parts, with the social area on the ground floor and the bedrooms on the upper floor and attic, all connected by a continuous staircase, forming a triple height ceiling ending in the sloping roof of the top floor.

On the ground floor, the rooms are related to the Garden and Swimming Pool and open to the great view of the Tejo River, favoring the creation of large glaze openings to this side of the house. The kitchen created a special connection with the outdoor area, through a gap that extends the interior kitchen bench with the external barbecue bench, allowing a fluid interaction between these two important areas that are both service and social.

The entire house faces south, with large glazing to benefit from the sun exposure and the view of the Tagus River, contrary to the layout of the north facade, facing the street, much more closed off with smaller spans, in a clear repetition of the original project.

A more sober house to the outside, it intends to open up more to the private sphere of everyday life in the back, with its garden that funnels the view to the mouth of the Tagus River, or the stairs that form an amphitheater to sit on and contemplate.

Lisboa, Portugal