AdH House

Mexico City, Mexico
David Zarzoso
Francesc Rifé Studio

On a sloping street around Lomas de Chapultepec, Mexico City, an enveloping grey stone wall encases a lush green garden. The oceanic climate vegetation inside speckles the brutalist cubic structure. Vines crawl in a disordered manner, undulating reeds sway to swift winds, a sheet of water lie obediently as ripples from falling leaves transforms the liquid surface. This is AdH House by Spanish practice Francesc Rifé Studio.

Situated within a residential zone, the dwelling consists of two main parti fitted inside a triangular site. The main structure—a massive volume cladded with grey stones and foldable louvered windows—cantilevers over the expansive patio, hovering above marble low tables and woven furnishes as a shield for occasional spurs of rain. Verdant greenies shelter this communal zone from direct sunlight with their porous shadows while creating a soft contrast to the masculine and monolithic form. Manmade geometries occupy the facades of AdH House from big glass openings to architectural indentations with a subtle organic texture. It breaks the uniformity of material limitations to deliver a wholly visual. The wide windows’ transformative characteristics then break this entity once again, bringing a dynamic exterior to the outer appearance.

Stepping inside, the cold palette is replaced by more tender tones with sand-coloured walls and wooden surfaces. Placed near the aforementioned large openings, the inner spatial quality is atmospherically engulfed in warmth for inhabitable desires. Chairs and tables take on a minimalist demeanour—having online thin lines of structural contours and functional planes. Artworks are placed strategically to give individual zones unique distinctions. Lighting furnishes are also curated specially to become objets d’art, keeping a cohesiveness with the identity of the project. These elements pose themselves as decorations, yet not intrusive due to their specific locales.

Spatial experience is designed to conduct a gradient in lighting manipulation. While public space is kept light and airy, semi-private and private areas are dimly lit with focal points, be it an artwork of statement by Iván Navarro or a long wooden dining table that’s footed with stainless metal. These pockets of space are concealed behind curtains of aluminium shutters, visually connecting the outer facades to the inner partitions.

Heading to the second level, the wooden staircase is an artwork within itself. With railings being offset from corresponding walls for soft illuminations from hidden lighting systems, the zig-zagging formation of wood and metal turn into a visual treat. Upstairs, bedrooms are distributed to be overlooking the courtyard with full views of the garden. Revealed from behind the louvered windows, these spaces opens up to the air of nature, unveiling itself from any programmatic barrier.

AdH House is a beautiful project that's complemented with the luxury layers of spatial contrasts, from soft to hard, then to soft again. The depth and complexity of design is clearly seen through the vision of Barcelona-based Francesc Rifé Studio, where a sanctuary can still exist amidst a busy metropolis.

In the shop