monterrey-based studio S-AR and marisol gonzález’s ‘casas SP’ is a set of single-family homes in mexican suburbia. this small housing complex is a sequence of abstract boxes that break down according to the material used in their construction or to construct their coating in white brick, corrugated black sheet, or white metallic louvers.


S-AR and marisol gonzález’s project consists of a small group of three houses located in a suburban area of monterrey, at the municipality of san pedro garza garcia, built on plots of approximately 150 sqm and with a single front view to the street. the built area of each house is of approximately 280 sqm with slight variations between them.



each house is divided into three levels with the main concept of two spatial cores. the bigger one is reflected in the principal center of the houses by volumes which stand out supported by a steel beam and organized successively in relation to the urban façade of the project, filling most of the plot’s length with the exception of the ground floor. this spatial core contains the main spaces of the houses, as well as the services for the bedrooms, kitchen, and laundry room.



the second core (smaller than the first one) corresponds to the circulations of the houses (hallways and stairs), storage closets, general services, and service bedroom in the ground floor, which is independent to each house. this utilitarian part serves as a containment space between each house — this way, the interior areas are separate in each house leaving the ground floor for the public and social use: kitchen, dining and living room, and a patio; which occupies two-thirds of the back area of the plot, located at the back of the parking area.



on the second floor, the main bedroom was placed at the front of the plot, and the living room at the back, both of them separated by services and the laundry room. this service’s core — as well as the circulations — is repeated on the third floor in which the secondary bedrooms are located. even though the plots are small, the houses offer open spaces that are visually connected between them; and their limits with full-height openings, contributing to the natural illumination and ventilation in most of the spaces.



despite the use of the same scheme in the complex, each house conserves a certain autonomy regarding space, materiality, and architectural language, generating a unique identity in the complex. materials were selected in white, gray and black tones to be used in most of the surfaces, with details in wood, iron, and black metal. 







project info:


architecture: S-AR + marisol gonzález 

location: san pedro, nuevo leon, mexico

architects in charge: cesar guerrero, ana cecilia garza, marisol gonzalez

programme: a complex of single family urban houses

client: private

construction area: 280 sqm

project year: 2016

construction year: 2017-2018

photography: ana cecilia garza villarreal + marisol gonzalez

materials: concrete block, structural brick, steel structure beams, wood, aluminum, and glass

construction system: concrete block walls and reinforced bricks, lightened slabs, ironwork and metallic coating


designboom has received this project from our ‘DIY submissions‘ feature, where we welcome our readers to submit their own work for publication. see more project submissions from our readers here.


edited by: maria erman | designboom

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