pedro henrique's palheiro beach house disguises solid concrete as wood

pedro henrique's palheiro beach house disguises solid concrete as wood

palheiro: a modern fisherman house


In the northern Portuguese coastal town of Esmoriz, Pedro Henrique Arquiteto completes a modern revival of the traditional ‘Palheiro.’ This building type is a fisherman’s dwelling that emerged in the early 19th century to meet the need for beachside habitation. As it pays homage to these vernacular architectural treasures that have long defined the Portuguese coastline, the Palheiro House safeguards regional heritage but also establishes an eloquent dialogue spanning across time — bridging the past, present, and future.


At the heart of the project is an archetypal form that marries innovation with tradition. While the home is built entirely of concrete, the team makes use of wood to create a timber slat-like texture along the facades. Timber slats also comprise the lightweight screens enclosing the structure’s large doorways and shading its full-height windows. This detailing creates a textural continuity throughout the project despite its contrasting material palette.

palheiro house pedro henrique
images © Ivo Tavares Studio @ivotavaresstudio



a house open to its surroundings


Architect Pedro Henrique curates the entrance of the Palheiro House to integrate its coastal surroundings. Visitors are drawn into the home by way of a raised ramp, supported by pillars recalling the region’s familiar coastal boardwalks. This unique structural feature not only pays homage to the local architecture but also extends itself into platforms that seamlessly transition into inviting terraces. These terraces serve as an extension of the indoor living spaces, opening out through large sliding windows behind with exterior shutters.


Upon entering the home, visitors are immediately greeted by a sculptural staircase. Functioning beyond its utilitarian purpose, the staircase becomes an organizing principle, contributing to the sense of spaciousness and unity within the house. Serving to divide the otherwise open floor plan, the staircase becomes more than just a means of vertical circulation, but a visual and functional anchor that shapes the interior experience.

palheiro house pedro henrique



inside Pedro Henrique’s coastal dwelling


The thoughtful design of Pedro Henrique’s Palheiro House extend to its programmatic organization. The ground floor is thoughtfully dedicated to the communal and social areas, framing broad views of the coastal environment to become a feature of the living spaces inside. This level is also home to the master bedroom and a washroom — a lounge and bedroom suite are found along the first floor above.

palheiro house pedro henriquethe concrete facade is manipulated with wooden slats to lend a timber-like texture

palheiro house pedro henrique
timber screens cover large openings to provide shading while allowing the interiors to glow at night palheiro house pedro henriquesunlight floods the home with rhythmic shadows


the lightweight, suspended metal stair divides the living space and kitchen

palheiro house pedro henriquethe central stair is a functional focal point


the gable rooftop is expressed along the first floor with its sloping concrete ceilings

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