Rustic Ruins Revived in the Yucatan – Hacienda Bacoc | Home Design Find

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Rustic Ruins Revived in the Yucatan – Hacienda Bacoc

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A unique renovation of an abandoned structure from the 19th century is turned into an extraodinary family home in the Yucatan.

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The handcrafted buildings had been used for making sisal fiber, and then in the early 20th century had also been used for livestock and beekeeping.

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The series of buildings was bought by a young family in 2006 – in ruins with no roofing.

Enough of the previous stone walls were visible to indicate an organized symmetrical layout to the campus.


Architects Reyes Ríos + Larraín Arquitectos retained the original ruin and built around the old stone walls.

They are conserved as contrasting historical graphic elements within the surrounding water gardens.

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The plan shows how the water around the house makes a rectangle within which the house is sited.

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This water feature is reminiscent of the traditional chultuns of the Yucatan region.

The old chultuns were also constructed by allowing rain to fill the depression made in earth from building a house, and walling it around.

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Within these surrounding water gardens, the formal restraint of the encroaching jungle looks both contemporary and traditional.

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The view from the lobby is of jungle.

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Additionally, a pool for swimming extends out beyond the water rectangle around the house.

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The new layout follows the original highly symmetrical layout hinted at by the stone remains.

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The house is organized around a central open courtyard, keeping to the proportions and layout of the orginal.

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Not just the plan, but all of the new dimensions – ceiling heights, orientation, the proportions of the openings like windows and doors – all follow the architectural proportions of the old Yucatan henequen haciendas.

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These traditionally proportioned openings create breezeways to ameliorate the hot and dry climate of the Yucatan.


The new facades were covered in stucco, bound with a wood resin in an update of traditional finish techniques.

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A mix of concrete and a red earth from the south of Yucatan were used to cast the walls onsite.

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The architects retain the old walls at the back of the central space – now roofed but open to the view from the front.

To one side of the open lobby, only the family living room and eat-in kitchen are enclosed.

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You can see part of the old wall surrounding the original building here.

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It takes real vision to have seen this amazing possibility to bring back ancient design in the original ruin.

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After creating this amazing place, the family has also made it available for vacation rentals in the Yucatan, but it is not cheap.

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