Casa Pinheiros: Contemporary Modernism in the Subtropics

Located in Sao Paulo’s Pinheiros neighbourhood, which takes its name from the dense subtropical pine forest that used to cover the area, remains of which crop up between the low-rising housing, Casa Pinheiros is a family residence of modernist sensibility and refined elegance. Designed by Brazilian practice Felipe Hess Arquitetos as a subtle interplay of cubist volumes and rendered in a coral hue that harmoniously stands out against its verdant surroundings, the house provides a comfortable home that is both sheltered from the extremities of the subtropical climate and open to its delights.

Set back from the street, the building occupies the front part of a long and narrow plot on the back of which is a lush, grassed garden. Although it appears as a solid block, the building is made out of two volumes, a taller block housing the public areas, and a shorter, slightly narrower block on top containing the private family quarters. A third volume, an elongated, one-storey service block housing the kitchen and other auxiliary functions, is inserted lengthways into the ground floor living space. Made out of raw concrete, it protrudes out of the main building volume long enough to create a small shaded terrace for outdoor dining.

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