Austere Retrofit of a Rustic 19th Century Dwelling on the Island of Formentera
A sensitive renovation by Marià Castelló Martínez architects transforms a traditional rustic building, originally built in the nineteenth century, on the Spanish island of Formentera.
Only very minor changes had been made to the exterior of the building in all that time.
The intervention focused on structural strengthening aimed at preserving the character of the original building.
Parts of the original exterior, which was in very bad shape, were replaced – but using the same traditional construction techniques: this beautiful worn stone masonry and the white lime mortar.
The exterior tiles were carefully retrieved and reused, and the plaster work redone.
A very restricted palette of materials characterize the traditional architecture of the region.
The architects stick to this regime, whitewashed lime plaster and heavy wood joinery and beams.
A new bedroom is added opening out to a private terrace facing south.
This terrace opening brings warmth and daylighting in, while sticking with the traditional vernacular of wooden beams contrasted with flat Arabic masonry.
Only in the new kitchen and two new bathrooms are more modern materials used.
But these 21st century additions embrace a modern version of the same austere design sensibility as the original.
Two additional bathrooms were added within the same space, while opening up the interior to create more daylighting within the traditional structure.
The thickness of the interior walls can be seen in the degree of the recess of the door. There is an almost Quaker purity of line in this austere interior.