Lover’s House by Isla Architects is a Spanish residence bathed in romance

Lover’s House emphasises light, shadow, form and texture in its colour blocked, sensual composition which is reminiscent of the work of Mexican architect Luis Barragán.

by Jincy IypePublished on : Mar 13, 2021

Textured and warm, Lover’s House designed by Isla Architects, reminiscent of Luis Barragán's style, looks out to the Tramuntana mountain range in Spain, revelling in its colour blocked compositions and terracotta pink form. The residence enjoys its location in a rustic island in Santa Maria, Majorca, surrounded by vineyards and protected by a pine forest that the client has been tending to for years, with the Spanish sun for company.

Lover’s House enjoys its location in the rustic island in Santa Maria, Majorca | STIRworld
Lover’s House enjoys its location in the rustic island in Santa Maria, Majorca Image: Luis Díaz Díaz

The Spain based practice, led by Marta Colón and Juan Palencia, share that the private client had these wishes – to turn a skeleton house under construction into one that could sell like hot buns on a Sunday morning after mass – for that to happen, the dwelling had to stand out within its locality and its real estate market, offering itself as a romantic retreat to enjoy the island and its warm, lovely climate.

Why the Lover’s House? “The promoter’s name is Amador, which is Spanish for ‘Lover’. The house also transmits a certain sensuality with its warm, reddish tones that adorn its walls and floors, augmented by the natural light that filters inside the house. So, when we started to look for names, this made total sense,” Colón and Palencia share.

The terracota pink, colour blocked form | Lover’s House by Isla Architects | STIRworld
The terracota pink, colour blocked form Image: Luis Díaz Díaz
The concrete retains its textural finish and is painted a rustic red| Lover’s House by Isla Architects | STIRworld
The concrete retains its textural finish and is painted a rustic red Image: Luis Díaz Díaz

The warm and succinctly layered residential architecture exhibits a graphic, drawn quality and took three years to complete. Its layout refers to the works of Catalan architect Josep Antoni Coderch, while its frames and hues are reminiscent of Mexican architect Luis Barragán’s marvelous colour blocked architecture. The concrete walls retain their textured finish and are painted a warm rosy pink while the palette takes on the same warm reddish tint inside.

The house’s 541 sqm program is developed on several axes that articulate along a series of robust walls that are arranged in a north-south direction. The access path is drawn through a pine forest toward the dwelling, which at first glance, appears closed and recreates the local Arab influences. A curved ramp snakes into the entrance through a garden which sits parallel to one of the house’s walls. A massive floor-to-ceiling pivoting door invites one on the porch and into the house.

  • One of the patios that flank the residence | Lover’s House by Isla Architects | STIRworld
    One of the patios that flank the residence Image: Luis Díaz Díaz
  • The asymmetrically inclined roof of the house | Lover’s House by Isla Architects | STIRworld
    The asymmetrically inclined roof of the house Image: Luis Díaz Díaz

The house’s materiality integrates and camouflages it with the local landscape. The exterior walls are plastered with a rough, rust coloured mortar. These textured long walls perform as visual settings that encase the island, the mountains, the garden and the pool in lovely frames. “We have tried to establish a precise hierarchy with these openings, to create an abstract composition of the overall volume,” explains Isla Architects.

Another large open patio with a tinted concrete bench outside | Lover’s House by Isla Architects | STIRworld
Another large open patio with a tinted concrete bench outside Image: Luis Díaz Díaz

Echoing the skin, the pink palette follows inside as well, on the walls, floors and beams, while white plaster, natural timber and copper accents provide slight, warm contrast. The foyer stretches to both sides of the longitudinal courtyard and a forest of bamboo is trapped between two long walls, leading onto the bedrooms. The guest room has its own patio and occupies the first volume of the Lover’s House. Two twin bedrooms that share a bathroom and is open to the garden, along with the main bedroom take up space in the south wing, extending onto a quaint, large open patio with a tinted concrete bench outside.

  • View of the bathroom and the bay window that sits beside it | Lover’s House by Isla Architects | STIRworld
    View of the bathroom and the bay window that sits beside it Image: Luis Díaz Díaz
  • The kitchen and dining area | Lover’s House by Isla Architects | STIRworld
    The kitchen and dining area Image: Luis Díaz Díaz
  • One of the warm toned bedrooms| Lover’s House by Isla Architects | STIRworld
    One of the warm toned bedrooms Image: Luis Díaz Díaz

The living room is located in the widest bay of the residential design, its windows framing panoramic views of the Alaró twin mountains that stretches ahead and the garden around the house. The kitchen has been placed to the North, independent from the living space yet connected to it visually. This too has its own patio, with a resplendant view of the Alaró twin mountains. The kitchen is to the north, independent but visually connected to the living room, and has its own patio.

Colour blocked volumes emerge from the ground beside the swimming pool| Lover’s House by Isla Architects | STIRworld
Colour blocked volumes emerge from the ground beside the swimming pool Image: Luis Díaz Díaz

The roof is inclined asymmetrically which allows it to open itself more to the south than the north, “protecting the large windows from the incidence of the sun, which in turn, when open, allow for cross ventilation to better withstand the high temperatures of summer,” explain the architects.

 Conceptual Sketch | Lover’s House by Isla Architects | STIRworld
Conceptual Sketch Image: Courtesy of Isla Architects

The west wall has an exterior window cut into it, the living room getting a full view of the swimming pool outside. Reflections from the pool dance on the beams of the room inside, creating a wonderful vista. When the living room’s blinds are closed (also in the same colour as the walls and its flanges in metallic tones), it filters the light, and the room aqcuires a deeper, reddish tinge.

The pool is kept detached from the house and get its own space and pocket, another succinct volume of the house that emerges from the earth.

  • The expansive living room | Lover’s House by Isla Architects | STIRworld
    The expansive living roomImage: Luis Díaz Díaz
  • Accents of white, copper and natural wood create subtle contrast with the pink hued form| Lover’s House by Isla Architects | STIRworld
    Accents of white, copper and natural wood create subtle contrast with the pink hued form Image: Luis Díaz Díaz

The flooring has been manufactured locally by Huguet and custom designed for the project. Washbasins, showers, fireplace and benches that feature inside the interior design are also made of red tinted concrete. “This limited palette of materials reveals the simple geometry of the building and creates a visual and tactile continuity between the architecture and its surroundings. Monochrome and vibrant, the house changes hues during the day, reacting to the sun and land, revealing movement through shadows and changing material nuances,” Sarriá and Carvajal continue.

Lover’s House by Isla Architects embodies a textural, warm and monochrome quality | Lover’s House by Isla Architects | STIRworld
Lover’s House by Isla Architects embodies a textural, warm and monochrome quality Image: Luis Díaz Díaz

Project Details

Name: Lover´s House
Location: Santa María del Camí, Mallorca, Baleares, España
Area: 541 sqm
Year of completion: 2020
Architect: Isla architects
Leading architects: Marta Colón de Carvajal / Juan Palencia de Sarriá
Landscape: Biel Cireé
Builder: Obrema 2000
Collaborators: Nelson Fidalgo Magro, Katerina Kulanova

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