Quinta Azul

Type: house

Location: 1844 Logans Hollow   Austin, Texas

This project was originally conceived as a spec project. However, early in the design process, due to the appealing characteristics of the site, I modified the program, and redesigned and built the house for my family. The house was designed centered within the idea of creating a space where my family lived surrounded, and stimulated, by nature. The hilltop 4200 sq. ft. house is very transparent. The exterior integrates subtly with the interior through the use of great glass walls. The house is simple, open, accessible, comfortable, and welcoming. Many of the materials that were used are exposed, avoiding redundant details, and showing the natural characteristics of each element. The main construction materials include steel, glass and stucco. The geometric form of the house directly responds to the location of large oak trees. The trees actually gave the house its shape. The boxy volumes are composed in a Lego-like manner around the trees, with their branches dictating void spaces in the spatial context. The most prominent element of the house is the second floor cantilever. It overhangs 15 feet, and it houses a kids’ bedroom. The rest of the second floor includes to additional kids’ bedrooms, all opening up to a game/tv room. The open plan living room, dining room, and kitchen are located on the first floor next to the master bedroom suite. The main entrance is accessed through the highest part of the 1.9 acre lot, through a paved plaza, and down a set of limestone steps. These steps culminate in a cluster of oaks located in front of the 10+ft. glass door. This trajectory has as its backdrop a breathtaking view of the valley beyond. Once inside, the interiors are composed primarily of white walls and ceilings, and hardwood floors that create a relaxing ambiance. Many green elements were included in the design of the house, such as icynene insulation, insulated glazing, rainwater tank, on demand water heaters, high efficiency 16-seer heat pump units, natural gas appliances, etc. All the excavated material was reused in the site, reducing the project’s carbon footprint to a minimum. Proudly, Architectural Digest Mexico featured ‘Quinta Azul’ in its July 2012 issue. Click here to read article. Additionally, Quinta Azul is part of 2013’s Austin Modern Homes Tour.

Scope of work: design, construction