Diaz Marcellino Arquitectos dresses the Argentinian house in corrugated iron

Corrugated metal, steel and wood have been used for a secluded Argentinian retreat that can accommodate up to 20 members of a large extended family.

The Rancho Serrano project was carried out by the Argentinian studio Diaz Marcellino Arquitectos (DMA). It is located in a rocky region of the Argentine province of Cordoba, in the Punilla Valley.

Rancho Serrano occupies a rocky site in Argentina’s Punilla Valley

“Clients needed a mountain ranch to share with their sons, grandchildren and friends on the banks of the beautiful Yuspe River,” said Diaz Marcellino Arquitectos.

“It’s a meeting place for three generations, of diverse users of ages, interests and lifestyles,” the studio added.

Rancho Serrano by Diaz Marcellino Arquitectos
The accommodation was designed for an extended family

The remoteness of the site led DMA to use simple materials that could be easily transported to the site and assembled.

The architectural firm chose a site at the foot of a rocky outcrop which protects the house from the strong winds of the region.

In addition to occupying the lightest possible footprint, the frame of the house was selected to avoid removing existing trees from the site.

Rancho Serrano by Diaz Marcellino Arquitectos
Simple materials were transported to the remote site

Building the house on stilts minimizes root disturbance and facilitates drainage of the property, according to the architects.

The exterior of the building is clad almost entirely in corrugated iron, a decision the architects say was driven by considerations of efficiency and cost.

“A rustic and resistant mono-material hull, in sinusoidal gray sheet metal, blends into the rocky environment and resists erosion.”

Triangular shapes on the wood-lined ceiling of an Argentinian retreat
The house has a wooden ceiling and a black steel frame

A black steel frame forms the main structure of the 222 square meter house. In its center, an equilateral triangle branches out into three equal volumes which organize the plan of the ground floor.

“The space is commissioned from this shape and connects three modules of identical composition,” said Diaz Marcellino Arquitectos.

Two of these volumes contain bedrooms, while the third is a covered outdoor space for outdoor dining and grilling.

The central part of the house contains the kitchen, a long dining table and a large built-in seating area tucked into a nook. This casual seat is formed from futons that provide additional sleeping spaces as needed by the many guests in the house.

Futons in the living room of the argentinian house with wooden walls
Futons serve as both casual seating and sleeping spaces for guests

A partial upstairs floor was built above the main living and dining room and configured as a mezzanine. This is where the majority of the guest beds are located. These are accessed by steel ladders rather than stairs, saving floor space.

The interiors of the house are almost entirely covered in wooden planks accented by black metal columns, doors and window frames.

“The interior skin evokes the forest with wood, recreating a warm atmosphere,” said Diaz Marcellino Arquitectos.

Rancho Serrano by Diaz Marcellino Arquitectos with lighted porch
The building’s corrugated iron exterior contrasts with the wood-lined interior

Other recently completed homes in Cordoba include a house wrapped in wooden slats by Barrionuevo Villanueva Arquitectos and a wheelchair-accessible house by S_estudio.

The photography is by Gonzalo Viramonte.


Project credits:
Responsible architects: Arch Sancho Diaz Malbrán, Arch Andrés Marcellino
Engineering: Arch Fernando Mattiuz, Arch Gustavo Lozano, Ing Edgar Moran
Collaborators: Arch Tania Carranza, Arch Seizen Uehara, Arch Guido Biasotto, Arch Carla Ramos Sagristani, Arch Natalia Silvestro

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