obra architects builds casa osa in the center of the rainforest
 
obra architects builds casa osa in the center of the rainforest
jan 25, 2015

obra architects builds casa osa in the center of the rainforest

a trek through incredibly dense rainforest in costa rica may lead you to an unexpected structure in a small clearing designed by new york and seoul-based practice obra architects. the home belongs to an american doctor who has long yearned for a residence in close proximity to virgin wildlife. the site is on a previously existing mango farm so that no trees were harmed in construction, and sits above the surrounding green tree canopies with views of the pacific and the nearby golfo dulce (sweet gulf).

obra architects builds casa osa in the center of the rainforest
all images courtesy of obra architects

 

 

stemming from the idea of close proximity to nature, the structure itself is conceived as a series of open-air boxes enjoying the immediate savagery of the vegetation and wildlife, oriented based on the topography at each of their locations. traditional double-pitched roofs form a complex canopy system that covers each of these programmatic elements and the various ramps that connect them and form interstitial courtyards and gardens protected from the roaming poisonous snakes.

obra architects builds casa osa in the center of the rainforest
internal courtyard surrounded by covered walkways and open-air rooms

 

 

the construction of the structure was carefully planned as the closest hardware store is located 8 hours away. cmu walls covered in white stucco speak to the vernacular of the area, utilizing affordable and easily available materials for the primary structure. the floors are left simply as polished concrete, absorbing heat in the winter time as a natural floor heater. the ceilings and roofs are constructed of locally harvested dead trees with an outer membrane of painted corrugated metal which effectively sheds water away from the home.

obra architects builds casa osa in the center of the rainforest
view through the covered stairways and walkways

obra architects builds casa osa in the center of the rainforest
the structural is fully permeable by nature and wildlife

obra architects builds casa osa in the center of the rainforest

obra architects builds casa osa in the center of the rainforest
each room along the hill provides a unique view and environmental quality

obra architects builds casa osa in the center of the rainforest

obra architects builds casa osa in the center of the rainforest

obra architects builds casa osa in the center of the rainforest
(left) entrance to the bedroom, (right) roof construction detail

obra architects builds casa osa in the center of the rainforest
canopy model

 

 

 

project info:

 

name: casa osa
location: cerro osa, osa peninsula, costa rica
category: residential
project type: a rainforest retreat sited on a 98-hectare property located in the biological corridor of the osa peninsula
size: 375 m2 on 98 hectare site, 4000 sf
status: completed 2013
credits: obra architects, pablo castro and jennifer lee
project architect: shin kook kang
project team: atsushi koizumi, patricia bohrer, stefan goossens, david karlin, doreen lam, edina nathania, mia thomsen
structural engineer: robert silman associates
contractor: brad shenko

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