Villa at Danzante Bay by Kevin B. Howard Architects

The newly finished Villa designed by Kevin B. Howard Architects is set in the dramatic shorelines of the Baja California Sur, providing the challenge to create balance from opposing influences of biomes, cultures, and design. The traditional and regional character of Baja, Mexico, melds with a minimal contemporary lifestyle. Photography by Robin Stancliff

Emphasis was placed on siting to create a house that rests low on the landscape while merging with the surrounding regions. Despite its low profile, the home is arranged to take advantage of the temperate climate and the abundance of natural light through careful arranging of the thin roof forms and strategic transparency through the main entry axis. The rectilinear module of the house is softened through repetition and layering of the program elements. Edges and boundaries are diffused by wide glass panes. Through these ephemeral borders the complex landscape unrolls in a contradictory vista of rugged red-rock desert cathedrals and lush marine reserve, showcasing the shifting presence of the Sierra de la Giganta mountains. Heavy masses bolster the structure, and that juxtaposition of thick masonry walls and thin contemporary horizontals reinforce the theme of balance and openness.

The interior volumes are also defined by a sense of contrast between the strong modern lines of the casework and the rich textures of locally sourced art and craftsmanship. Natural site cut stone finishes and gleaming linearity recall distinctions between the arid rock cliffs and the biological abundance of the Bahia de Loreto Marine Life Preserve.

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