Built in a resort community on the Pacific coast of Peru, this contemporary dream house is impressively serene in feel, but complex in design. A project by Longhi Architects, the house was a challenging build located right on the sandy dunes of the shoreline, with a requirement for a wide-open design that didn’t sacrifice privacy. The house’s lower floor is covered in glass windows, and contains nearly all of its public rooms. A smaller upper level, located principally at the beach side, has windows only along one edge, facing the shore. This section of the house contains its private bedrooms and bathrooms, and sits above a portion of its outdoor deck. Bordered on both sides by stone privacy walls, the rear deck contains expansive space for entertaining and lounging, including a lit infinity pool which adds visual interest and color to its beachside facade.
Inside the house, a unique arrangement of rooms is employed to make the most of the coast’s sights and sounds while keeping individual isolation in mind. The entire first floor of the dwelling is dedicated to entertaining and living, with a living/dining room combination which stretches a full two and a half stories tall, all finished in transparent glass. This room is integrated with the outdoor spaces beyond, sharing space with the deck facing the beach. An incredibly novel “bridge” runs from the entry foyer, above the living room, to the module which contains the private areas of the house, allowing that section to remain completely separate from the public wing below. The private rooms, which have less glass area than most of the rest of the house, are better isolated from prying eyes while still enjoying fabulous ocean views and a private upper deck.
The beachside home contains four principal areas: an outdoor living space greeting the ocean air, an indoor public area with glass walls and soaring ceilings, a second-story entry foyer with access to all interior areas, and an elevated private module above outdoor decks.
The architecture of the dwelling includes a surrounding “frame” made from stone, which includes a number of its outdoor passageways. This dark stone variety forms privacy walls and stairways outside, while accenting interior spaces as well.
The design of the house features an impressive infinity pool, brightly lit by underwater spotlights. The placement of the pool allows somebody to ascend past swimmers when climbing up to the house from the beach below.
The house is literally built on the dunes of the beach, on a spacious stretch of prime resort land that had not yet been developed. Its decks and rooms enjoy an unspoiled view of the Pacific through floor-to-ceiling glass windows.
The pillars which hold up the second story are placed semi-randomly, with the hopes of seeming organic and unstructured. However, their arrangement forms two vague clusters of columns under either side of the structure they support, an intentional placement which avoids blocking the view of the beach out the middle of the bottom floor.
The outdoor and indoor living spaces of the house are meant as a continuation of one another on days of pleasant weather, so great measures are taken to ensure that they act as a single unit. Much of the glass at the home’s front slides out of the way to provide free passage between indoors and out, and the flooring and architecture continues seamlessly between the two areas.
Though the dining room, living room, and kitchen all occupy a single combined architectural space within the design, they are made distinct from one another by stone borders, modulation of ceiling height, and changes in the elevation of the floor. The result is a cohesive yet separate set of spaces within a single expansive room.
At both sides of the main room, the bottom portion of a glass panel section forms a sliding door, opening up the house even further during sunny, warm days and whenever an event takes place that requires movement between each portion of the exterior and public rooms inside.
At the side of the residence and above the dining room, an angled walkway runs between the entrance to the building at its rear and the private bedrooms facing the ocean. The opaque material used in a walkway signals a transition between glass-walled public spaces and more isolated private rooms.
The dining table cleverly integrates a few architectural elements of the home itself, a custom design with legs made from the pillars which support the second story and a tabletop made from the glass which forms the walls of its public spaces.
Almost the entire bottom floor of the building’s interior opens a full two stories tall, with the exception of its kitchen, which is enclosed on the top by a balcony which houses the entry foyer for the house.
The same stonework seen all over the home is used here to create a short set of steps leading down into the living area, and extends to form the structure for a wraparound couch in the space. This stripe of color and the elevation distinction from the rest of the main room help to distinguish the living space and give it a unique identity within the house.
A simple staircase with an open banister leads up to the second level of the home at the rear, towards its street-side door and the sloping walkway which leads to the private rooms of the residence on the beach-facing edge.
In between the staircase and the kitchen, a unique storage, display, and countertop array is formed by a sculptural arrangement of stone. Wine bottles are conveniently kept along one edge, while the unconventional shape of the installation provides plenty of public space for more items.
Despite the wide-open nature of the dwelling’s public rooms, the structure of the upper floor allows for private spaces such as bedrooms and this small bathroom. Take note also of the shape of the bathroom vanity, meant to mimic the stonework that shapes the property as a whole.
Way up at the top of the property near the roadside, an extension to the home’s top floor carries all the way to its entrance. The actual door to the house is a simple and clean glass affair, but the pathway leading to it is wide and impressive, built into the dunes.