Casa Libre: Embracing Freedom in Architectural Harmony
February 23, 2024

Perched on the Bay of Lagos in Portugal, Casa Libre stands as a testament to the profound meaning of living in freedom through its exceptional architectural design. 

Casa Libre by Mário Martins AtelierCasa Libre by Mário Martins Atelier, Photo by Fernando Guerra / FG+SG architectural photography

The name itself, Casa Libre, reflects the duality at its core – ‘Casa’ representing the dwelling space and ‘Libre’ symbolizing transparency, lightness, and freedom. This one-single-story building unfolds with an open and closed design concept, featuring a rectangular layout adorned with expansive glass walls overlooking the vast sea horizon to the south. The southern glass walls not only provide captivating views but also embody the essence of living freely. In contrast, concrete walls define closed sections, creating a fully enclosed appearance.

Casa Libre by Mário Martins AtelierCasa Libre by Mário Martins Atelier, Photo by Fernando Guerra / FG+SG architectural photography

Welcoming inhabitants through a substantial wooden entrance door, Casa Libre becomes a portal between the internal living space and the external world. Moving toward the southern part reveals a central patio, a key element defining access and separation. This patio connects social areas like the living room and kitchen facing south, while four bedrooms in the east wing offer privacy. The southern section, culminating in a swimming pool rising from the garden, becomes an entertainment haven with an outdoor wooden deck for relaxed seating.

Casa Libre by Mário Martins AtelierThe substantial wooden entrance door leads the inhabitants to the Casa Libre, Photo by Fernando Guerra / FG+SG architectural photography

Casa Libre by Mário Martins AtelierInside the Casa Libre, Photo by Fernando Guerra / FG+SG architectural photography

Casa Libre by Mário Martins AtelierCasa Libre looks fully enclosed with its exposed concrete walls, Photo by Fernando Guerra / FG+SG architectural photography

Rather than imposing itself, Casa Libre embraces nature, allowing it to flourish on the central patio and roof, offering an immersive experience that extends beyond the building’s limits. The chosen materials - concrete, glass, and wood – seamlessly integrate with the surroundings. Concrete embodies rock and land, wood symbolizes vegetation, and glass reflects seawater.

Casa Libre by Mário Martins AtelierThe central patio, Photo by Fernando Guerra / FG+SG architectural photography

Casa Libre by Mário Martins AtelierThe rooftop garden, Photo by Fernando Guerra / FG+SG architectural photography

Casa Libre by Mário Martins AtelierThe swimming pool overlooking the sea, Photo by Fernando Guerra / FG+SG architectural photography

The weight of concrete harmonizes with the lightness of the canopy, and the transparency of glass walls blurs the boundary between inside and outside. The wooden elements, from ceilings to doors, establish a natural connection. Casa Libre’s materials culminate in an elegant yet contemporary design, making it a modern icon that not only embraces architectural freedom but also integrates seamlessly with the surrounding environment.

Casa Libre by Mário Martins AtelierCasa Libre’s materials culminate in an elegant yet contemporary design, Photo by Fernando Guerra / FG+SG architectural photography

Casa Libre by Mário Martins AtelierCasa Libre by Mário Martins Atelier, Photo by Fernando Guerra / FG+SG architectural photography

Casa Libre by Mário Martins Atelier

Floorplan 

Casa Libre by Mário Martins Atelier

Rooftop plan

Casa Libre by Mário Martins AtelierElevation 

Casa Libre by Mário Martins AtelierElevation 

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Project Location
Lagos, Portugal
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Completion Year
2022
Project Location
Lagos, Portugal
Completion Year
2022
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