Dark corrugated cladding covers Mariana Palacios' self-designed holiday home in Argentina

| 9 comments

Black corrugated metal covers this residence designed by architect Mariana Palacios as a holiday getaway for herself in a remote area of Cordoba, Argentina (+ slideshow).

Pampa House by Mariana Palacios

It took Palacios 10 years to track down a suitable site for the family holiday home, which she designed with the help of architects Verónica Oddone and Javier Sánchez.

Pampa House by Mariana Palacios

The corrugated metal structure is set on a vast 50-hectare site in Pampa de Pocho, a plateau that is framed by three mountain ranges.



The rugged landscape is dotted with tufts of grass, flocks of sheep and herds of horses, and strewn with huge boulders – some of which have been used to create a stone wall around the property.

Pampa House by Mariana Palacios

The dark siding was influenced by the colouring of the surrounding rock formations, but its angular form distinguishes it against the rounded features of the landscape.

Pampa House by Mariana Palacios

"The main idea is that visitors can see a black point in the horizon and can differentiate the house's strong geometric shape from the local rock massifs," said Palacios.

Pampa House by Mariana Palacios

"La Pampa de Pocho is an impressive place which makes the viewer fall in love with its silent and monochromatic landscape," she added.

Pampa House by Mariana Palacios

The single-storey structure is constructed from steel framework, a decision that was informed by the plot's inhospitable climate and isolation.

Pampa House by Mariana Palacios

With no access to water or electricity on the site, Palacios plumped for a solution that could be manufactured in sections offsite in a studio in Córdoba and transported to the plot in just two trips.

Pampa House by Mariana Palacios

The cast-concrete foundation was the most complex part of the process said Palacios, who chose to leave the slab exposed across the interior of the house.

At one side of the plot the foundations cantilever over uneven ground to create a flat footing for one of the three bedrooms.

Pampa House by Mariana Palacios

Labourers settled in a small village for 15 days to help complete the works, including a wall made from local stone in the living room.

Pampa House by Mariana Palacios

The south-facing facade has only a few openings, while the northern elevation has wide windows and doors to take in the sun and scenery. These open onto a concrete terrace that is encroached on by large stones and sheltered by a bamboo roof.

Pampa House by Mariana Palacios

A narrow courtyard planted with native species of cacti cuts into the side of the building between the master suite and two further bedrooms. Low-level windows set around the edge of this outdoor area are shielded from direct sunlight by the bulk of the building.

Pampa House by Mariana Palacios

Inside, the spaces are dressed with traditional wooden furniture and colourful textiles, and served by water pumped from a nearby spring and electricity harvested from solar panels.

Pampa House by Mariana Palacios

"The achieved aim of this project was to inhabit this magical place and celebrate in each space our nature's impressive sights," said Palacios.

Other holiday homes in Argentina include a house made form a trio of board-marked concrete volumes, and a structure that projects out from the top of a sand dune.

German architecture office NE-AR also recently added a pavilion with a pair of twisting concrete fins and a fireplace to a holiday home in the south of the country.

Photography is by Gonzalo Viramonte.

Pampa House by Mariana Palacios
Location plan – click for larger image
Pampa House by Mariana Palacios
Site plan – click for larger image
Pampa House by Mariana Palacios
Floor plan – click for larger image
Pampa House by Mariana Palacios
Section one – click for larger image
Pampa House by Mariana Palacios
Section two – click for larger image
  • Sim

    “The south-facing facade has only a few openings, helping to shade the interior from the sun, while the northern elevation has wide windows and doorways.”

    Since Argentina is on the southern hemisphere, the sun probably comes from the north side of the house. So the few openings on the south side are probably for protection from the cold while the windows to the north are for letting in the sun.

    • Hi Sim,

      Thanks for pointing this out, I’ve now updated the story.

      Best, Jessica/Dezeen

  • peter

    The sun is in the north, not the south. The windows face the sun.

  • Guest

    A steel-framed house clad in steel. What a refreshingly welcome change. I can hear the sustainability crowd’s teeth gnashing from here.

  • peter

    Are you going to correct your mistake about the sun?

  • peter

    Here’s an article about Uruguayan artist Joaquin Torres Garcia and his map that might explain what has happened here.

    http://www.wordsinspace.net/urban-media-archaeology/2011-fall/2011/11/30/inverted-map-of-south-america/

  • Nice. I still wonder if I want to live in the wilderness, exposed to fires… I am currently at the edge of a fire area, not surrounded by open space. And my grocrery is two miles away.

    • Thomas

      Clearly the people who commissioned the house want to live there, so whatever your opinion on that particular question is, it is not at all interesting here in the comments section. By the way, Argentina looks like such a beautiful place!

  • Sebastián Corral

    This kind of architectural post makes me wonder if all we’re supposed to do is comment on how pretty it is. Like yeah, I personally think it’s pretty but how is it relevant?