This is the first International project for FACTORIA, a co-design experience in partnership with our Miami Office led by Claudia Phillips. It is located in “Spanish Village neighborhood” in the heart of downtown Boca Raton, Florida. Only thirty minutes from downtown Miami , two miles from the sea and 3 blocks from Boca Raton Future City’s Government Campus. Downtown Boca is a vibrant, booming downtown generating a proposal from morphological operations that articulate it in relation to the heterogeneous context of this urban fabric in continuous transformation.
Spanish Village houses were built in Mediterranean revival style to house the workers for the Mizner Development Corporation. (MDC) By the 1920s Addison Mizner was well known “society architect” who created the Palm Beach style and influenced Boca Raton’s architecture. He designed Worth Avenue and Mizner Park with flowing water fountains and courtyards where you are always reminded of the flowing ocean waves. The Boca Raton Resort and Club was designed by Mizner and remains a landmark even today.
This house provides a tropical refuge in Downtown Boca Raton. While it makes the most of natural sunlight and ventilation it also utilizes solar energy. The choice of materials aims for a sustainable response to construction process and performance, diminishing harm to the environment as well as house maintenance. The Roof Structure has been designed to receive Tesla Solar Roof tiles when they become available in Florida and Natural Gas has been brought to 9th street for better Energy conservation/utilization.
The project takes advantage of the rectangular lot, and the living space conceptually connects the inner life with the tropical exteriors of this region by an orthogonal geometry created by two square volumes that are bridged by a central open space. This space includes 28 feet by 22 feet of uninterrupted glass on both sides of the open space. This central open space, spans the length of the West private Garden and East Pool facades, with four sets of sliding glass doors that allow the house to be entirely open when desired. Thus, this central area, redefines the limits of the house, qualifying the spatial conditions of the project.
The entrance, at the North West corner, pushes the residents into a more rational, concrete and bold hallway. As you transit it, you get immersed into a wilder, double high, hierarchical and dynamic space. A place for social joy and harmony, a combination of wilderness and sophistication. This openness, allows light to filter down to the ground, like in a tropical forest, surrounded by palm trees to the west side and to the elongated pool to the east side. This is definitely a social gathering place that generously expands to the horizon like an endless sea. Here there is no beginning or end between being inside or outside the house, making one: House and Nature; Inside or outside platforms. An above all, a bridge that crosses under the canopy of Nature.
The house was designed for a couple of young parents that enjoy entertaining and outdoor living and connection with the landscape. They have one daughter whom they like to see run and play cultivating family Unity in a contemporary way. Nature is used as a guiding element throughout. This space is full of vitality and flows, celebrating experiences with family and friends, working, cooking, and playing while enjoying tropical life, pool views and while the daughter runs outside. On the first floor with 22 feet ceilings, there is the living, the dining area and the kitchen. In the second level overlooking the center, on one side is the open plan office and in the other, you find the man cave bar/ TV room. The private spaces are located at both ends of the central space defining the privacy of the square volumes. The house has 2 guest bedroom on one side and on the other side 2 master bedrooms located vertically one above the other. The parents wanted a comfortable walk-in closet space. There is a grand master bathroom downstairs. Above it, is the daughter bedroom and playroom. The service spaces are all located efficiently linearly on one side of the house across the garage area. A house layout that is efficient and easy to customize.
The outdoor life is so crucial to this house. The central core expands to the exterior pool and champagne spa, which are linearly laid out to surround the house with views of water and fire.
The structure of the house was designed with massive stem wall footings, , masonry walls, combination of steel joist and concrete floors and hurricane impact resistant glass. The house finished floor was elevated 2 feet above the crown of the road which makes it more water and wind resistant.
The orientation and shape of the house were designed taking into consideration the longitudinal site, views and climate. The west and south of the house are more massive with limited glazing to shield from the strong south and west sun and the east and north are open, less massive and have lots of glazing to enjoy the soothing northern and eastern lighting and views of the pool.