When it comes to wood, a sustainable alternative is to work with plantation species such as ” Guayavillo” or Myrcianthes fragans. A layer of Laro Max ( water based impregnant) every 8 months is necesary to keep wood free of termites. No polyurethane finishes are recommended in this side of the world. Wood needs to constantly absorb the protective layer. The Perkins project is 50% built. Dont miss our on site pet! ( lower left corner)

When you live in a country like Costa Rica where pure air is constantly flowing, and after a psychometric chart study indicating that the use of the passive strategy known as Cross Ventilation you will achieve a 70% comfort without using Air Conditioning almost throught the year, then the Wind Wheel comes in handy!

Know your Holdrige Life Zone in Costa Rica and you will achieve more sustainable dwellings in an easy, less expensive and more sustainable way.Design and passive strategies analysis are the answer to building in a respectful manner.

My client Peter  from New York,  decided to follow the construction process of his home I designed. He changed the cold and snow for tropical weather and grilled fish, while involving directly during all construction stages. Unless you hire professional assistance with proven experience, it makes it easier for architectural inspectors like me to keep track of everything that goes on at all times.That makes  this process a more open and clear one for all parts of the team. Construction can be complex, specially in such a place like Puerto Viejo, where culture, distance and construction methods represent a challenge to whoever that’s not a local.

IMG_1612 Building in Puerto Viejo: living room view from terrace with metal truss to achieve longer column spans.

IMG_1402 Read More

Very eye catching, simplistic and elegant proposal

Option 1 White Tpo fascia

 

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Option 2 copper fascia

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Option 3 aged aluminum fascia

So in the tropics, you must be cautious with the aesthetics you want for your project. As my clients Oumi and Urs from Switzerland said, “we are not in Ibiza, we are in Costa Rica” .That means that you may want to select materials that are low maintenance and colors that blend with Nature. Of course we all loved the first option but it is up to the client to decide which strategies benefit both their pockets and needs. I will provide all the elevations options and will guide you to take the decision that best suits you. Read More

2015-03-28 08.44.06While traveling all around Costa Rica following my client’s special sites for building their homes in the tropics, I can’t help but to learn from vernacular architecture. In few words, what people do for themselves based on the empirical process. Read More

Either of the two times during a year, one of them right today, the sun crosses the celestial equator and  the length of day and night are approximately equal; and the Sun is closest to the Earth.If you are building a tropical home in a hot, rainy and humid weather like Costa Rica, this means that you really should prepare for intense heat over your roof! And your head!

In a tropical location, roof design is the responsible architectural element that will provide comfort and quality indoor environment. In the video below, you can see how a house in the mountains of Perez Zeledon is perfectly shaded during equinox, the hottest time of the year in Costa Rica.

This video is prepared by the program I generally use called Eco Tect,this is when I can double check what my common sense tells me when I am designing at any location. This case specifically needs direct natural light during the rainy season as, so the eaves width and house orientation is determined by such technology. The process feels more like playing with the roof measurements and angling spaces in order to satisfy 2 opposite weather conditions.

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