Built on a picturesque hillside in Portugal, this home by Mario Martins Atelier boasts commanding views of the valley and towns below it. Accessed via a driveway at the home’s top, plenty of design space is freed up below the home to experiment with geometric forms, resulting in an abode the seems to float above the hillside, supported on a compact ground-level structure. This isn’t the only unique feature present in the project, however, as the house sports numerous other uncommon design features that make it a fantastic space for hosting events and living a life connected to the environment. The house is a no-compromise design with luxurious and exotic finishes and decor throughout, but still retains a sleek and polished style, aided by simple structure colors and lines. Each room of the house blends indoor and outdoor elements with calculated ease, cleanly integrating the exterior recreational spaces with internal areas.
The home’s driveway comes from above, eliminating the design limitation of creating a garage structure entrance in the bottom of the home. A garage is there, but no concession has to be made for ingress from the home’s modern front facade. Due to the hill’s slope, a car on the driveway cannot even be see from certain points below the home if somebody would choose to park one there.
From the side, more of the house’s clever structure becomes apparent. Its layout, especially that of the outdoor spaces, it much more complex than a cursory glance from below would suggest. Mario Martins’ design packages a sophisticated, functional home into a minimal external profile.
Outside decks and entire portions of the home extend out over the hillside, contributing to the sensation of a peak position for homeowners. All views out the home are unobstructed by the ground, allowing for broad views down across the surrounding land.
One of the most interesting of the home’s rooms is this mostly-enclosed patio, open to the air from above. Instead of jutting a deck and fireplace out one side of the home as an afterthought, the architect and homeowners chose to integrate an inexorably outdoor space into the middle of the home, giving it the feel of a living room with the function of a campfire.
Most of the home’s rooms are built around its long pool, allowing for greater glass area in each individual room. The pool acts in the same way as a traditional central square in many European and South American villas, opening even the innermost of rooms to extensive sunlight.
Taking on a golden hue from its windows and carpeting, the indoor living space is expansive and ultramodern, with low furniture and glass surrounding nearly every side. A hanging television mount separates the sitting area from a glossy white conference table.
Built right onto the side of the pool with folding glass doors for party occasions, the kitchen is bathed in white and is ample for large-scale meal preparation. Next door in the open-to-air dining room, a large grill sits on one wall for casual cooking days.