l09 house

guimarães, portugal, residential

L09 House was built on a plot of land with an area of 1200 sq.m., irregular in shape, facing west and with a steep inclination. The streets of the development and the entrance to the lot are located on the lower level to the west.

Two platforms were created – one at street level, bounded on the south by a concrete retaining wall which leads to the entrance; the other – three meters higher, is defined by the development. In volumetric terms the construction seems to materialize only on this second platform.

The house grows eastwards on this higher platform, set onto the supporting walls set longitudinally into the lot, breaking free of the terrain in a suspended volume. This volume forms the bridge between the two main wings of the house: to the west, the social areas; to the east, the private areas.

Between the two is a gardened courtyard, bound on the north by the suspended volume below which the terrain is modelled and slopes down to the level of the entrance (lower platform of the terrain).

With the hillier topography to the east, the constructed volume blends into the terrain, and is only visible on the inner elevation facing the courtyard. On the green cover accompanying the natural development of the terrain only a number of skylights break out to capture the natural daylight.

On the west, the construction breaks free from the terrain and extends the interior space out to the courtyard that surrounds the swimming-pool and is suspended over the garden and the landscape.

Guimarães, Portugal

design year


Marlene Sousa

José Campos Photography


foundations and structures

hydraulic engineering

mechanical engineering
Coelho Lima Engenharia

electrical engineering

acoustic and hygrothermal
Prof. Eng. Vasco Peixoto de Freitas

construction company
Sociedade de Construções Guimar

landscape design