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Cypress House

Sintra, Portugal
1 of 8Ana Barata

The Cypress House, one of the works that marked the professional life of Raul Lino, was built in the Serra de Sintra, in São Pedro de Sintra. It is a residential building, with the name "A Pedreira", made for Raul Lino's personal residence, it is still in the possession of his family, being considered a Property of Public Interest, in the Protected Area of ​​Sintra-Cascais.

The House

The house with an irregular plan is composed by the articulation of bodies with different heights and areas, it develops along five floors finished by staggered and differentiated roofs, made by roofs of 2, 4, 6 and 8 waters. In an implantation in a terrain of high slope, the roof and basement are part of its 5 floors, the basement being completely buried. In order to enable a better use of the land, in an organic design, this work will result in an articulation of volumes, of different floors and morphologies, in a zigzag plan. Raul Lino turned this building into a set of fractional volumes, in which the roofs are independent, and with a very intelligent distribution in the openings and transition spaces, marked by a rhythm, in which the landscape is brought inside. He almost completely isolated the building from the street, forming the organicity of the plant, which is distributed to an interior patio. There is an almost poetic way of inhabiting the space, which unfolds throughout the house, through the understanding of the scale, the control of light and a great spatial richness. In this way, the architect appropriates the existing values ​​of the place without overlapping them, in a subtle game between tradition and innovation, encompassing both in an unrepeatable solution.

The Cypress

The cypress represented in a way Lino's personality, someone isolated and imposing, as well as the formal characteristics of this type of tree. This house was built for himself, not being able to be called a holiday home, as he spent many seasons there, going to Lisbon every day to his studio to work, it would be a season that would run from March to October. This project started after leaving England to study in Germany and with this we can predict that it is a house that, from an early age, contained intimacy, modesty, passions, that is, something that is thought through in detail by who will live it. This project is just finished designing in Portugal, being only started to build in 1912 , taking two years until its inauguration. The house was built on land donated by his father, where previously it would have been a quarry explored by the company under his responsibility, being the first name of this project "The quarry". The mark of this activity that he worked on is present in the great escarpments that are still visible in some areas of the land today, but even so, Raul Lino manages to implant the house in a place where he can find a feature where he achieves a magnificent view of nature.

The Green Roof

The green roof, not being the initial color of the tiles, shows the concern that Raul Lino expressed for the house to blend even more with the surroundings and nature. Once again the evident importance that nature has for this architect, not only preserves it, but also dilutes his work so that nothing interrupts it. Immense species of trees already exist and others are planted again, such as plantains, oaks, pines and many others.

The light

Light is something that, in this house, has a fundamental role in its characterization, starting with the shadows drawn on its facades by the immense trees from the outside. The light emphasizes the ambience of this house due to the vibration it imposes on the green / brown color of the glazed tiles, a color that integrates with the surroundings. This play of lights results in the multifaceted types of spaces that the architect designs throughout the different hours of the day. In the Casa do Cipreste, the games of light follow each moment that we go through or stop, being translated as The sun is indispensable for the good hygiene of a room and contributes a lot for there to be joy. This house is anything but ordinary. It is a house integrated in the landscape but that does not go unnoticed, imposing itself by its uniqueness. It is the image of something that only a passion for what you do could give birth. The way in which each detail is treated by Raul Lino shows that this house meant the search for the full meaning of its existence. In this house, he not only invested a large part of his time, but also all of his money, his knowledge, his love and his care. The places where the water drips, the design of the handles, the sound of the Dining Room, the light, all these elements make this house a manifestation of style and in this case, it is the way Raul Lino makes architecture, a passionate man, especially for manifestations of the spirit.