31-10-2019

Casa Almudena designed by Jesús Perales

Jesús Perales,

Marcela Grassi,

Baix Penedès, Tarragona, Spain,

Ville, Housing,

Bricks,

Casa Almudena, designed by the Spanish architect Jesús Perales for a family of four, is a single-storey home that encourages the family to connect to each other and to enjoy the surrounding landscape of the Baix Penedès vineyards in Tarragona, Spain.



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Casa Almudena designed by Jesús Perales When you look at the photographs taken by architecture photographer Marcela Grassi, there is something familiar about Casa Almudena, a house that showcases its forthright, homely feel right from its skin of industrial-style bare brick walls.
The house - conceived for a small family of four - is located in Baix Penedès, a municipal area in the southern part of Catalonia, between Barcelona and Tarragona, famous for its beaches and for its regional wine. The family have a range of hobbies, including music, arts and crafts and cooking and they love hanging out together.
With this premise, for the architect Jesús Perales, the objective was clear: to design a house where the occupants could stay connected and enjoy the view of the beautiful vineyard, at the same time maintaining their privacy, particularly in terms of their neighbours.
The result is a house with a walled facade and openings of differing sizes, connected by continuous passageways that join together in a central glazed courtyard. This has enabled Perales to craft a circular house that visually connects each separate part of the home.
This way, it doesn’t matter if you’re getting a meal ready while the kids are doing their homework or working on some craft piece because you always have the feeling that the rest of the family is somehow with you. All the living areas open onto this courtyard that not only becomes the focus of the project, it also makes it possible to turn the sequence of rooms inside the house into a single, large living room for the family to enjoy together.
Apart from these passageways, each room in the house was built independently, piece by piece, working with sloping roofs that give the rooms their own, specific identity. Concrete roofing is used throughout, allowing the material history evident in the concrete formwork and natural imperfections to come through. The same elements that Marcela Grassi shows us in her photos and that give Casa Almuneda such a real, lived-in appearance.
As it happens, Jesús Perales considers the construction materials to be very important, to the point where he always works with exposed materials, without hiding a thing. The house was constructed using a traditional method and the materials used - ceramic, concrete and wood - give it organic warmth, sensibility and expression. 
They were also selected for their sustainability. So, once the structure was completed, the walls and ceilings were insulated with wood, implemented as a more natural and breathable alternative to a thermal bridge.   Low energy consumption underfloor heating adds warmth to the home’s exposed concrete flooring and solar panels on the roof complete the home, keeping the environmental impact of this new build as low as possible.
The Casa Almuneda project by Jesús Perales won the “New Private Buildings” category of the XI Alejandro de la Sota Biennial Exhibition, Tarragona Architecture Exhibition.

Christiane Bürklein

Project: Jesús Perales - https://jjesusperales.es/
Collaborators: Anthony Benitez Martin - architect, Marcela Grassi - photographer, Marc Riera Arbós - technical architect 
Location: Baix Penedès, Tarragona, Spain
Year: 2017

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