Casas San Juan is a housing project located in Cuernavaca, Mexico, designed by Mexican architectural practice A.flo. The Project lies in a very dry area in the city of Cuernavaca, Morelos in Mexico. The city was nicknamed the “City of Eternal Spring” by Alexander von Humboldt in the 19th century. One our away from México City, the most important summer states for the Aztecs and in present times as well for the inhabitant of Mexico City’s. The name “Cuernavaca” is derived from the Nahuatl phrase Cuauhnahuac, and means “surrounded by or close to trees.” The name was eventually Hispanicized to Cuernavaca because the Spanish could not pronounce the Nahuatl name.
12 apartments and 20 house’s units surrounded by local trees and vegetation, which the most valuable asset of the whole project. The site has a slope towards the back which respond to a local Glen, which is part of the city’s water network coming from the volcano’s, and nearest mountains; Cuernavaca’s weather has a natural sprinklers systems coming from the glen’s network.
The houses are arrange symmetrical as the main path in the center becomes the entrance to all of them, like a big garden or a small “in between park” for the development. The apartment units (85 and 90 sqm) are located in 2 floors both with a full view to the private garden of the complex and the Glen trees, which are quite tall. Jacarandas and tabachine’s are some of the species of the trees. Moreover the vegetation is main guideline of the project: views, footprint of the houses, gym and pool are placed for the preservation of the original location of the trees.
The houses are two stories. Ground floor is a public services (kitchen, hall, living, garden, toilet, dinning and laundry) and the Upper floor is a private (3 bedrooms, and 2 full bathrooms with walking closets).
The houses are passive technology designed. The shape is based on the access (and staircases location), creating a porch marked by the “Big box” over it with a double height for the Master Bedroom, that also brings heaviness to the main car accesses, (the park in between) this sensation of light heaviness is the great combination to the slim height of the trees and the boxes, bring to our mind the “house in the tree”.
The pool is solar heated. The design becomes a brake pergola lines that smooths the sunlight and let the pool be a cool – warm place that let you stay for hours. The gym a sutil white box at the end of the site that let you workout without interruptions.
+ Project credits / data
Project: Casas San Juan Cuernavaca
Location: Cuernavaca, Morelos, Mexico
Date: August 2009
Budget: 25,000 K mxn pesos
Architecture project: Aflo Arquitectos | http://www.aflo.mx/ | Mexico MArch Andres Flores Architect
Associate with: Serrano Monjaraz Architects | Mexico. Juan Pablo Serrano Architect
Design team: Lluvia Martinez, Cesar Reyes and Erik Kobayashi.
Client : AzurCity S.A. de C.V.
Structural Consultant: IESSA
Main contractor: CONVEPO SA de CV
Chef contractor: Hugo de Vega
Photographer: Marcos Betanzos
+ About A.flo
A.flo is a multidisciplinary Practice devoted to design in all of dimensions and scales. The primary ideal of the practice is based on the analysis of urban (or global) elements, a process that consists of different approaches to the dynamic behavior of contemporary society, the flow of the economy and the cultural development. Founded by Andres Flores (March [AA], London) in 2004, who worked at internationally recognized offices like TEN arquitectos, Zaha Hadid and Norman Foster. Throughout the process we have developed a standard of quality and aesthetic-cultural versatility, which creates interpretation of our work, creativity and experience as well as comfort. The technology broadens the picture to us with new solutions and aesthetic quality, taking advantage of new techniques and processes to develop a critical-futuristic vision for the changing needs of contemporary society.
The design is involved during all conscious and unconscious processes of the people, a goal that is based on different theoretical and pragmatic principles which have been analyzed with different projects, at large or small scales. The identity of Year unfolds with converging parts of society as the events in the city or bodily movements, analysis, which is linked by digital media and decisions supported by advisers of sustainable design, structural, aesthetic, functional and constructive criteria.