Maria Rosa House / VAGA

Architects: VAGA
Area: 140 m²
Year: 2020
Photography: Carolina Lacaz
Manufacturers: Móveis Lef, Ulimax
Lead Architects: Fernando O’Leary, Pedro Domingues, Pedro Faria
Project Team: Gabriela Inomata, Tali Liberman
City: São Paulo
Country: Brazil

Maria Rosa House is a unique residential project by VAGA, set amidst the bustling urban landscape of São Paulo’s Itaim neighborhood. Designed as an urban refuge, this home not only counters the dense commercial surroundings with its serene interiors but also establishes a profound connection with its external garden. In this residential project, VAGA intricately balances simplicity with functional innovations, enhancing the living spaces through strategic design interventions aimed at improving natural light entry, spatial integration, and the use of materiality that evokes a sense of belonging and comfort.

Maria rosa house / vaga

The townhouse, tucked away on a small street in Itaim, São Paulo, finds itself in an unexpected juxtaposition, surrounded by one of the largest shopping areas globally. The design aimed to construct an urban refuge where the residence, despite its bustling surroundings, could offer a peaceful atmosphere for the owner and guests, enhancing living spaces and their connection to the backyard.

The intention to preserve the original character of the building and its contextual integrity led to a design approach focused on minimal yet effective interventions. These aimed to expand the built area and adjust its functions to better serve the homeowner’s needs. This approach also aimed to enhance the spaces by increasing natural light, improving integration with the garden, reconfiguring vertical circulation and wet areas, and adding an annex for laundry purposes.

Maria rosa house / vaga

The residence unfolds over three levels, with the main access on the middle floor, where the slab was extended to accommodate a living room at the entrance and a kitchen at the rear, facing the garden. Previously, communication with the lower floor was via an external staircase, which was removed and repositioned within the main building’s outline.

Maria rosa house / vaga

This change improved the outdoor space and lighting on the lower floor, which now features a workspace, a gaming area, a TV room, and a small bathroom. The expansion of the outdoor area on this level was a foundational aspect of the design, ensuring that even on a compact site, the house would offer a garden, a rare feature in a metropolis like São Paulo. On the upper floor, reserved for privacy, only minor changes were made to the finishes of the two bedrooms and the bathroom.

Considering the project’s initial goals and the overarching concept, the design utilized elements that underscored simplicity and rusticity, drawing on the original property’s character. This was achieved through the use of materials like brick, reinforced concrete, and wood, which not only enhance the aesthetic but also evoke a sense of belonging and comfort among the occupants, creating a homely feel in an urban environment.

Maria rosa house / vaga
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Project Location

Address: Itaim Bibi, São Paulo, Brazil

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