landscape intervention 'mirador 360º' revitalizes ancient ruinous castle of southern spain

landscape intervention 'mirador 360º' revitalizes ancient ruinous castle of southern spain

an ancient stone castle dating back to the 9th century overlooks the southern spanish village of álora. its rich history together with its location among the mountainous landscape of sierra del hacho serves to attract travellers to the ancient fortress. in an attempt to revitalize the ruinous site, an architectural competition was held, calling for the refurbishment and renovation of the castle’s surroundings. in response, spanish firm waterscales arquitectos developed an intervention in two parts which serves to capture the energy of the culture and landscape. the first phase, ‘tapestry scale 1:1,’ introduces a stone map to guide the visitor toward experience and discovery of the site. the second phase of the intervention, entitled ‘mirador 360º’ refines a walking pathway upward to the castle and the mountain’s summit.

alora mirador 360
all images by fernando alda



the trajectory of ‘viewpoint 360’ introduces a physical connection between the stone castle at the summit of the hill and the main square of the ancient village. the precisely curated curves along the pathway enhance viewpoints over the vast landscape. as the original route had fallen into in a derelict condition, waterscale arquitectos intervenes with a new ‘stone carpet’ supported by a nearly invisible sandstone retaining wall which visually blends into the earth. the texture of the stone route transforms as it approaches the dynamic 360º viewpoint. toward one direction the visitor overlooks the natural, untouched landscape of southern spain, while the other direction offers views over the historic fabric of the region, comprising such structures as the gothic chapel of jesús nazareno de las torres, the arab castle, and the medieval boundaries of the surrounding village.

alora mirador 360

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project info:


project title: mirador 360 (viewpoint 360)

architecture: waterscales arquitectos

design team: carmen barrós and francisco del corral

location: álora, málaga, spain

program: public space

investor: ayuntamiento de álora

completion: may 5th, 2019

photography: fernando alda

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