The location for this project is on the picturesque island of Vieques, a small island off the coast of Puerto Rico. The site is a gently sloping hillside with it’s lowest point and entry at the public road and the highest point at the top where views to the Caribbean Sea are breath taking.

Project Name: Vieques House
Studio Name: Messana O’Rorke
Vieques, United States
Photography:  Brian Messana

Vieques House by Messana O'Rorke - Sheet1
Side Elevation ©Brian Messana

Our client came to us with a simple brief; he wanted a retreat from his professional life, a place where he could disconnect. He required a minimal living environment, one that is easy to maintain with the ability to secure and protect quickly and easily. Our response was to create a modern version of a castle made from poured in place concrete.

Vieques House by Messana O'Rorke - Sheet2
Rooftop Seating ©Brian Messana

The house is composed of four components, a lap pool for the avid swimmer, i.e. the moat, a walled in garden, guest pavilion, and raised living container. The tropical weather can quickly shift from a sun drenched day, to rain showers, to gusts of wind. The living container is raised to address the issue of protection as well as gain a clear view to the Caribbean Sea.

Vieques House by Messana O'Rorke - Sheet3
Pool Side ©Brian Messana

Within the container is the master bedroom, bathroom and living space. The kitchen is out doors and is secured behind wooden doors. Wooden shutters are designed to completely secure the container. A guest bungalow is located at the end of the garden and lap pool. The lap pool creates the strong boundary on one side while a poured in place concrete wall defines the three sides.


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