The Valley House is located in the city of Penafiel, with an amazing view over the “Vale do Cavalum”.
With an irregular shape and different altimetry, the plot ensures a flat zone at the confrontation with the public way, where the entry is made. The arrival to the house is exciting because of its abstract and protected form, without any openings on that side, developing curiosity on the visitor.
The entrance is closed at north side but, after entering, we are welcome by the beautiful valley view, over-expecting the experience of the architecture piece.
The house is fully open to the valley side—first you are ’blind”, and protected, and then free and open. The view of the valley becomes the unique atmosphere of the building.
With exemplary contemplation of the landscape, the house extends to the outside and tries to integrate, to enjoy the best of this environment.
In this way, the Villa materializes in a horizontal piece, a rectangular shape with approximately 30m of front, and only one visible floor, having another one buried.
Functionally the house is organized trough a division of the floor plant in two parts: the social area, with the living rooms, kitchen and technical areas; and the private area, with the bedrooms. The central courtyard, at the entrance hall, determines the physical separation of these two sections.
The homogeneous volume, stabilized and adapted on place, suffered a pull movement at its south facade, creating a rhythm of negatives for sun and rain protection. The porch guarantees the pleasure of outdoor space, contiguous to the house, followed by a green area that protects and frames the views of the house.
The courtyards are constantly suggesting outdoor life. The indoor-outdoor relationship, and the glamorous context of the contemporary environment—clean, practical and comfortable—asks us to stay quiet to let the landscape become the master of this space.
Architects: FRARI - architecture network
Design Team: Maria João Fradinho (Project Leader), Daniel Oliveira, Ángel Delfín, Amparo Bel and Rafael Morais.