The project Caracol Hostal Santiago meant the intervention of a house in 1914, located in the Bellavista neighborhood. This is part of an isolated group of houses two to four stories that differ from the rest of the neighborhood where the continuous facade is the protagonist.
The requirement of a new program to the hostel meant a significant increase in surface and major structural intervention that included an extension to the 3rd floor. That is why the project plans to differentiate the new and old in a clear, rather than trying to mimic, revealing at the same time the different construction techniques that were used in each of the periods.
While the material is used to generate this contrast is trying to maintain a simple volumes only be restricted to continue up the same structural lines the perimeter of the original building, looking for this does not formally stand above the rest of the houses.
The sum of small enclosures interconnected, resulting from the construction technique of the original house (masonry confined with horizontal and vertical elements of concrete very slender), were not compatible with the way of inhabiting a public use program as it is a hostel.
That is why we decided to create a triple height space with the idea of ??creating a meeting place for passengers passing through the different levels and at the same time allowing, through skylights, illuminating the darkest precincts of the first floor .
This was, first “possible”, because the person in charge of construction was the same in charge of design, which facilitated the transfer of information and on the other “necessary” as an intervention of this type has many uncertain as to be almost inefficient to have a bundle of flat finished before starting the work (You do not know what is going to bump into a house in the early twentieth century).
There are 5 photos in this Caracol Hostal Santiago – FOAA blog post. Follow the thumbnail below to view all 5 high-res photos.
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