The second chapter of the rose-house begins with the city code. The rules allow us to construct a new addition to the existent building on the back of the plot facing Princesa Street.  Being Vila Real de Santo Antonio city center heritage protected, we had strict rules to follow: (1) all new buildings are obliged to have exactly 12m height; (2) to have a clear distinction between old buildings and new additions, the design façade should not be similar to Pombalino style – rectangular french windows organized in an orthogonal grid.

PROJECT: Mustard building
LOCATION: Vila Real de Santo António, Portugal
CLIENT: private
PROGRAM: refurbishment, extension and division in independent apartments of an heritage building
AREA: 678 m2
DATE: 2018–2021
ARCHITECTURE: Aurora Architects + Furo
ARCHITECTURE TEAM: Sérgio Antunes, Sofia Reis Couto, Tânia Sousa, Carolina Rocha, Rui Baltazar, Ivo Lapa, Dora Jerbic, Anna Cavenago, Afonso Nunes, Kasia Cichecka +  António Louro, José Castro Caldas, Paula Vargas
CONSTRUCTION: Francisco Rodrigues – Cervimat
PHOTOGRAPHY: do mal o menos
FURNITURE: a Linha da Vizinha and Takt

Mustard Building By Aurora Arquitectos - Sheet4
©do mal o menos

We took the challenge set by the regulations and we created a four-floor building divided in two to allow more light in the central patio. To improve the opportunities for social interaction and the common amenities of the residential complex, it was decided to use the last floor to locate a small swimming pool and a terrace for sunbathing.

Mustard Building By Aurora Arquitectos - Sheet6
©do mal o menos

For the facade, we designed a set of one pane sliding windows out of alignment. The dimension of the windows and the ability to disappear inside the walls can transform the living rooms almost into outdoor terraces making the most of the weather of this region.

Mustard Building By Aurora Arquitectos - Sheet8
©do mal o menos

For the interior, our option was to explore the opposite of the exotism of the existent building and design calm interiors similar in all the flats with wood and cream terrazzo. To this relaxing atmosphere, we added a bold element – an open partition of wood painted in a gradient of pink that organizes the social space of the flats and makes the chromatic connection with the beginning of this story: the rose building, that now is mustard-rose.

Aurora Arquitectos

Founded in 2010 by Sofia Couto and Sérgio Antunes, the studio Aurora Arquitectos was the natural consequence of the work developed in the previous years. The journey began during the academic period, growing stronger with the professional experience with the Kaputt! collective.

Currently with a team broadened to other elements, the studio works on projects of a variety of scales, from small houses to multi-family residential buildings, as well as cultural facilities. Recently, the most developed theme is urban regeneration, which is the focus of the studio’s specialisation and research.

In its approach, it is particularly important the reaction to the site, what to do with the existing construction’s space and elements (sometimes, centuries old). The challenge is, therefore, to interpret, scrutinize, copy, distort and even ironize those raw materials, giving them back to the site in a new and unexpecting way.

Each case is overseen in an attentive and custom way, as to look for a distinct solution, that makes each project a singular experience. Considering the unravelled limitations (legal, budget, design brief or construction site constraints), the efforts go into unfolding the project’s key moments, the same moments that result into the built space, providing meaning to all the rest.


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