A minimalist Mexican home has rocky roots

Echegaray, a minimalist Mexican home by Pérez Palacios Arquitectos Asociados, draws on its rocky site, which peeps out from its lower levels

dark and opaque exterior of minimalist mexican home
(Image credit: Fernando Marroquin)

Echegaray, a minimalist Mexican home, rises from its site, an opaque, dark, geometric formation standing on rocky terrain. Designed by Mexico City studio Pérez Palacios Arquitectos Asociados (PPAA), the house, located in the State of Mexico, was conceived as a 'solid black stone with a wooden pavilion on top'. Tactile and elemental, the design draws on the nature of its context, while at the same time responding to the client's brief for an elegant, contemporary family home. 

exposed rock wall in minimalist mexican house

(Image credit: Fernando Marroquin)

The rocky base of this minimalist Mexican home

The architects composed the home to emerge from the ground, culminating in the uppermost level's terrace and light timber structure. This transition – from solid to transparent, and from heavy to ethereal – is underscored by the material selection and overall spatial treatment that plays with surface textures and light. The site's rock, excavated during the foundation build, has been left exposed on the lower level, bringing a sense of roughness and tectonic qualities to the architecture. Meanwhile, minimalist architecture of clean lines and smooth planes dominates above, till the journey leads up to the fully glass-enclosed top pavilion that opens up to the city beyond through long urban vistas and blue sky views. 

terrace looking out to mexico city with modern furniture

(Image credit: Fernando Marroquin)

'The house is made to be discovered, like going up a mountain: the project is a closed block that contains private spaces, and only when you go up to the social area on the top floor do you discover the full-length view of the land,' the architecture team, which is led by founder Pablo Pérez Palacios, writes. 

minimalist mexican house interior

(Image credit: Fernando Marroquin)

In this design, the typical residential programme has been turned on its head, with the communal living spaces placed at the open, flowing top floor; private spaces below; and the closed-off, darker ground level hosting the garage. It is in this last space that 'the stony ground has been left exposed', the architects explain, offering a captivating natural display that is also celebrated through the side views of the bedrooms just above.

bedroom with large window and sheer curtains in mexican house

(Image credit: Fernando Marroquin)

outside mexican house looking in through glass walls into living room

(Image credit: Fernando Marroquin)

rock wall in mexican house

(Image credit: Fernando Marroquin)

ppaa.mx 

Ellie Stathaki is the Architecture Editor at Wallpaper*. She trained as an architect at the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki in Greece and studied architectural history at the Bartlett in London. Now an established journalist, she has been a member of the Wallpaper* team since 2006, visiting buildings across the globe and interviewing leading architects such as Tadao Ando and Rem Koolhaas. Ellie has also taken part in judging panels, moderated events, curated shows and contributed in books, such as The Contemporary House (Thames & Hudson, 2018) and Glenn Sestig Architecture Diary (2020).