The very same pine panels used to cast the concrete on the exterior of Ze House, a residence in Portugal by Paratelier architects, were brought inside to be reused as the interior floors, walls and built-in furniture. Not only is this a cool and unusual example of recycling, it brings a sense of cohesion to the overall design, especially as the concrete retains a natural pine vein relief texture from the formwork. The architects wanted to carry “the same metric rhythm” inside and outside the house.
Though the house is modern in appearance, the design of its layout is inspired by the medieval castles nearby, where the city of Lisbon comes into sharp focus on clear days from the highest level. The three-story Ze House features strategically placed windows that target views of the Barris Valley landscape and the vineyards that flourish on its hills.
But it’s really the novel use of pine formwork that makes Ze House shine – essentially turning the house inside-out after its initial construction. Inside, the pine stretches all the way up onto the ceiling, comprises the refreshingly simple kitchen cabinetry and lends an expansive feeling to double-height rooms.