Modern House In Portugal Is Partially Built Underground

Situated at the periphery of the Guimarães city in Portugal, this house gets to enjoy a rather privileged location. It was designed and built here by studio REM’A in 2019. The region is surrounded by a high-density residential area but doesn’t share any of its negative associated characteristics. Instead, it feels remote by comparison while still enjoying the convenient proximity to the city. On a smaller scale, what that means for this house, in particular, is that it gets to maintain its privacy and to make the most of the natural topography surrounding it. The house is closely connected to the outdoors through a series of voids and yards. They’re adapted to suit each type of space.

The ground floor living areas open up towards the swimming pool and the gardenView in gallery
The ground floor living areas open up towards the swimming pool and the garden
The ground floor spaces are defined by large windows and sliding glass doors View in gallery
The ground floor spaces are defined by large windows and sliding glass doors

The geometry of the house is very clean and simple and the materials used to build it are pure and simple as well. As you look closer it becomes immediately apparent that the house has these unfinished concrete walls and floors. They give it a rough and somewhat rugged look but they’re immediately balanced out by wood and smooth surfaces. This prevents the house to look too industrial and makes it seem welcoming and cozy instead. The buried garage also gives the house a nice tucked in feel, similar to a semi-underground structure. Other elements such as the swimming pool and the garden open up the house to the outdoors and expand it beyond its physical boundaries.

Several types of voids and openings are strategically scattered around the houseView in gallery
Several types of voids and openings are strategically scattered around the house
Unfinished concrete walls and floors give the impression of a rugged and industrial spaceView in gallery
Unfinished concrete walls and floors give the impression of a rugged and industrial space
On the other side of the rugged concrete shell the interior spaces look very warm and invitingView in gallery
On the other side of the rugged concrete shell the interior spaces look very warm and inviting
The poolside deck acts as a transitional space and as an extension of the living areaView in gallery
The poolside deck acts as a transitional space and as an extension of the living area
The massive upper floor contrasts with the glazed lower level in numerous different waysView in gallery
The massive upper floor contrasts with the glazed lower level in numerous different ways
Internal and external voids and courtyards are spread across the floor planView in gallery
Internal and external voids and courtyards are spread across the floor plan
Although the site is not exactly big, the house communicates with its surroundings very naturally and beautifullyView in gallery
Although the site is not exactly big, the house communicates with its surroundings very naturally and beautifully
A section of the house including the garage is built into the ground and the result is a semi-buried structureView in gallery
A section of the house including the garage is built into the ground and the result is a semi-buried structure
The wall dividing the living room and poolside deck can be fully opened in order for the two spaces to connectView in gallery
The wall dividing the living room and poolside deck can be fully opened in order for the two spaces to connect
The living room features a large sectional sofa and allows the focal point to shift from one side to the otherView in gallery
The living room features a large sectional sofa and allows the focal point to shift from one side to the other
Groups can either be facing the TV wall or the pool and garden area, depending on the mood and contextView in gallery
Groups can either be facing the TV wall or the pool and garden area, depending on the mood and context
The kitchen is long and narrow and has a floating bar surface along the glass wallView in gallery
The kitchen is long and narrow and has a floating bar surface along the glass wall
The staircase which links the two floors has a very sculptural and minimalistic designView in gallery
The staircase which links the two floors has a very sculptural and minimalistic design
White walls and a matching ceiling and furniture allow small spaces like this one look bright and airyView in gallery
White walls and a matching ceiling and furniture allow small spaces like this one look bright and airy
Similarly, a white decor combined with glass surfaces and large mirrors give this bathroom a very fresh lookView in gallery
Similarly, a white decor combined with glass surfaces and large mirrors give this bathroom a very fresh look
The house also communicates beautifully with the distant landscape and viewsView in gallery
The house also communicates beautifully with the distant landscape and views
The garage is part of the lower level which is partially built into the hillside and undergroundView in gallery
The garage is part of the lower level which is partially built into the hillside and underground
At night the light comes from underneath the house which creates a very beautiful visual effectView in gallery
At night the light comes from underneath the house which creates a very beautiful visual effect
This is one of the internal courtyard spaces designed in response to the unique topography of the siteView in gallery
This is one of the internal courtyard spaces designed in response to the unique topography of the site