RCR Arquitectes uses red concrete to build Palmares Clubhouse in the Algarve

Overlapping planes of red concrete form the walls and roof of this golf clubhouse, designed by Pritzker Architecture Prize-winning RCR Arquitectes for a resort on Portugal's south coast.

Palmares Clubhouse is the landmark building of Palmares Ocean Living & Golf, a new resort in the Algarve backed by developer Kronos Homes.

Roof of Palmares Clubhouse by RCR Arquitectes
Palmares Clubhouse forms part of the Palmares Ocean Living & Golf resort in the Algarve

Catalonian studio RCR Arquitectes, which was awarded the Pritzker Architecture Prize in 2017, has designed all the buildings on the resort, including a hotel and various apartments and villas.

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.

Column of Palmares Clubhouse by RCR Arquitectes
The building is formed of red pigmented concrete

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.

Terrace of Palmares Clubhouse by RCR Arquitectes
Multifaceted columns support the overlapping roof slabs

"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."

Canopy of Palmares Clubhouse by RCR Arquitectes
The flooring is a Portuguese natural stone

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.

Furniture at Palmares Clubhouse by RCR Arquitectes
RCR Arquitectes designed the furniture as well as the building

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.

Interior of Palmares Clubhouse by RCR Arquitectes
The building contains facilities for the golf course

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.

Roof of Palmares Clubhouse by RCR Arquitectes
The building offers panoramic views of the coastline

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.

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Palmares Clubhouse by RCR Arquitectes
Palmares Clubhouse by RCR Arquitectes
Palmares Clubhouse by RCR Arquitectes
Palmares Clubhouse by RCR Arquitectes
Palmares Clubhouse by RCR Arquitectes
Palmares Clubhouse by RCR Arquitectes
Palmares Clubhouse by RCR Arquitectes
Palmares Clubhouse by RCR Arquitectes
Palmares Clubhouse by RCR Arquitectes
Palmares Clubhouse by RCR Arquitectes
Palmares Clubhouse by RCR Arquitectes
Palmares Clubhouse by RCR Arquitectes
Palmares Clubhouse by RCR Arquitectes
Palmares Clubhouse by RCR Arquitectes
Palmares Clubhouse by RCR Arquitectes
Palmares Clubhouse by RCR Arquitectes
Palmares Clubhouse by RCR Arquitectes
Palmares Clubhouse by RCR Arquitectes
Palmares Clubhouse by RCR Arquitectes
Palmares Clubhouse by RCR Arquitectes