The clubhouse is the first building on the resort to be completed. As the building where guests come together, it has been designed to feel both grand and welcoming. It achieved this with a form that is both monumental in scale, but also highly open.
Multifaceted columns support the thick concrete slabs that form the roof, overhanging a glazed facade that offers panoramic views of the coastline.
These roof planes gently overlap, creating a tiered topography that helps the building integrate with the landscape. This naturally divides the interior up into different sections, creating moments of seclusion within the open-plan space.
"The clubhouse is the social part of the Palmares project and is one that brings together with all its intensity each of the concepts that we explained," said Rafael Aranda, one of the three co-founders of RCR Arquitectes.
"The different spaces have their uniqueness and their landscape frameworks that, together with the interstitial outdoor spaces create a unique experience difficult to explain. It is the perfect place to pass the time."
The architects chose to give the building a red tone, to match the high levels of clay in the Algarve soil. The same tones will feature in the apartment buildings, with use of a stucco finish which uses marble dust to replicate the colour of local clay.
The flooring is a Portuguese natural stone called Marble Rosa Zarci, which also boasts rich red and orange hues.
As well as planning the building, RCR Arquitectes also designed the furniture to ensure that every element is in harmony.
"Everything was thought out in detail, from architecture to furniture, safeguarding the natural beauty of the place and proximity to the sea, in a total fusion and respect for spaces," said Aranda.
Palmares Clubhouse had a soft launch at the end of 2020, along with a 27-hole course designed by leading golf architect Robert Trent Jones Jr.
Along with golf club amenities and full concierge services, the building also includes a fine-dining restaurant, which will be serving a Mediterranean-inspired menu when it opens later this spring. The space can also be used to host private events.
The aim is for the clubhouse to become the primary meeting place for guests at the resort, when the first apartments and villas open later this year.
"We are delighted with how RCR Arquitectes have blended the textures and tones of the landscape into the architecture at Palmares," said Saïd Hejal, partner and CEO of Kronos Homes.
"The lushness of the coastal environment is encapsulated perfectly, from the gently sloping terrain to the rich depth of the colours."
Founded in 1988, RCR Arquitectes is led by Aranda alongside Carme Pigem and Ramon Vilalta and is based in their home town of Olot. To mark the studio's Pritzker Architecture Prize win we looked at their key projects.