On top of a gentle hill in the Alentejo region stands Casa no Tempo. It was once the home of the owner’s grandparents and was transformed into a unique retreat by Silent Living. Yet again, in partnership with the architect Manuel Aires Mateus, they created a building combining modern minimalism with a rural timelessness.
This unique space contains a personal narrative. The owner’s grandparents wished that the land and property would remain in the family for future generations. As a result, it became a silent retreat, where the guests can also enjoy this unique heritage.
The pristine landscape is the first thing that welcomes the guests. They see a vast area with cork trees, pastures, wild fields, ponds, streams, and brooks. Here and there, timeless granitic rocks are visible. The minimalist white volume with a double-pitched roof stands alone in the field. The simplicity of this image should not mislead you. As you approach, it soon becomes evident how big the house is. The raw texture of the red ceramic roof tiles stands in clear opposition to the smoothness and precision of the exterior wall finishing. The main entrance lies under the most dominant feature of the building - the barrel vault.
The subtlety of the project design is striking. The architects treated the existing old building with the utmost respect and sensitivity. The structure has been preserved and renovated with great care. You can see it in the thickness of the construction walls - they are massive. This feature assures that the interior is isolated from external heat and nighttime cold. The visible leitmotif of the project is subtlety. Inside, the structurally uneven plasterwork gently reminds you of the building’s past. The clay floor dominates the entire house and meets white marble in the doorways (the same material is used on the kitchen countertop).
The layout is very clear - almost symmetrical. There are four bedrooms with private bathrooms, a common area with a fireplace located in a longitudinal corridor, and a kitchen with a dining area. Thanks to the location of vast window openings, the residents can enjoy expansive views and the possibility of looking into the far distance. The constant presence of nature gives the impression of openness. There is also a 400-square-foot swimming pool outside created to reflect the surrounding natural streams and ponds.
There is a similar set of elements in each bedroom - oak wardrobes constructed into massive boxes. Walls in the bathrooms are tiled with white boulder tiles, and water fixtures are classically styled. In this monochromatic interior, the limited number of materials has a calming effect.
Casa no Tempo means ‘home without time’, and in some respects, that is true. It seems as if the time comes to a standstill here.