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Villa Tangier

Lisbon, Portugal
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The Tangier villa was built in 1903 by order of Jorge Colaco, an artist of great impact at the turn of the 20th century. The chosen location (Monte Estoril) was, at that time, in an accelerated process of urbanization, with a view to its transformation into a tourist resort of superior quality, which determined the appearance of multiple single-family houses, mostly with an eclectic tendency. From the turn of the century, however, eclecticism was partially overcome by a more nationalist architecture, geared towards the summer conditions sought by an increasingly larger middle class that lived around Lisbon.

Vila Tangier emerged in this latter context, and is one of the works that best reflects the research that, at that time, the architect Raul Lino started to do around the ideal of "Casa Portuguesa". The same author had made, in the two years before, other interesting examples: the Monsalvat and Gomes da Silva houses.

The Tangier village is a building of irregular plan, composed of several bodies, including an octagon, which originally corresponded to the porch. In height, the house has three floors, with elevations devoid of remarkable details, with the exception of the application of bands of polychrome tiles, whose pattern is mostly geometric, in aesthetic dialogue with the characteristic double eaves.

Inside, the compartments are rectangular in plan, organized into two main bodies separated by a central staircase leading to the upper floors. The main room is located on the edge of this organic structure, articulated with the porch and with a small balcony. The general layout favored functional concentration: thus, the areas of a more social nature are located on the ground floor, to the Southeast; family support spaces on the opposite side; the upper floors were intended for rooms and private facilities.

The house remained in the possession of the original family until 1937, the year it was acquired by Mario Pereira. The new owner sponsored works on the property, according to a project by Zacharias Gomes de Lima, which was limited to minor updates to the space, including the construction of an annex. Much more serious were the works carried out in the 80s of the 20th century, when the wooden frames were replaced by aluminum and when the porch was closed, also using aluminum.