Our Dream by Espacio 18 Arquitectura

Our Dream is a modern brick house located in Oxaca City, Mexico, designed in 2021 by Espacio 18 Arquitectura.

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A retired American couple, dropped everything to fulfill their long life dream of living in Oaxaca, a city they fell in love with and chose to be their ultimate destination.

Elizabeth and Ray, through diversified coincidences, decided to pursuit a 300m2 land at the city limits in Oaxaca, in this small town named San Sebastián Tutla, where they would build their dream house, the one they had worked their entire lives for, and the one they dreamed since their first visits to Mexico. Not only they would adapt to a new culture and an entirely different society, but they would change their whole way of living.

Their last residence before moving down to Oaxaca, was in New Mexico, USA which is known for its majestic skies and extreme weather. They lived in a very peaceful neighborhood. Our workshop had the biggest responsibility on showing this retired couple to learn how to live this whole new and different life the way they had never done before, accepting new typologies, new materiales, and to embrace the interior, all these because of the zone and adjacent constructions.

Elizabeth and Ray are outgoing social people, being part of a community and especially being loved by it is something easy for them, they are invested of what happens in their surroundings, but mostly in what they can offer to their local community, they come to contribute. And so, their house was design to be evolutive, changeable, full of life, of reunion, where friends and mezcal won’t ever be missing. An oasis at the city limits.

‘Nuestro sueño’ is a box full of clay that contains coherent concrete structures based on a 60cm nod, marking and distributing the program, indicating that the heart and soul of the house are the kitchen and central patio, just like an old colonial Oaxacan house downtown. Folding steel bay windows transform the space and fade away the barrier between inside and outside, making flexible united rooms for coexistence.

Different considerations had to be put on thought while building this residence, like having a vegetable patch, their leisure through a sewing shop, a wood shop, a gallery and cinema. This house was made with wide and adaptable spaces, so in the future, accommodations can be done. Plus, we had the privilege of truly observe this house through all of the seasons, during the construction process and once it was finished, every view was different, a brick clock in the central patio and the lightning through the concrete beams showed completely different perspectives every time.

In the Master bedroom, the idea is to wake up to the sunrise, and start living its spaces observing the trace of time. Its core halls lead you to the rooftop, which shows you the incredible Sierra Madre Sur. A distinguished fact is that the vegetation and interior design are habitants trademark, creating colorful spaces planned for the enjoyment of the ones visiting, because all of this was created for them.

The idea was always to create a welcoming-life full space, one that will show you how Mexico embraces you, a place where you can finally feel being in Oaxaca.

Photography by Onnis Luque

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- by Matt Watts