Casa Rio

Modern architecture is so beautiful because it’s so varied and open to interpretation and there really are some mesmerising properties popping up all over the world that capture our attention on the regular here at Coolector HQ. This latest to have turned our head is the fantastically contemporary Casa Rio from Paulo Merlini Architects which is located in the Gondomar region of Portugal and has some of the coolest design features we’ve seen in a while.

The Paulo Merlini designed Casa Rio is one of those pieces of architecture that you can’t help but fall in love with because every element of the design has been carefully considered and offers a compelling visual impact without being too overwhelming. Great materials and a clever use of space help to make this cracking piece of modern architecture stand on its own two feet and work perfectly for its owners.


Portugese Perfection


Completed in 2020, the Casa Rio project stems from the remodelling of an existing farmhouse which is located in the very remote city of Gondomar in Portugal. By disassembling the poor quality materials of the old facade the architects were able to discover that the house was actually made up of three small houses built according to the needs of the former owner but not suitable for 21st century living – so they set about the revamp and Casa Rio was born.

Bringing the structure into the 21st century was the key premise for the creation of Casa Rio from Paulo Merlini Architects. It was important to maintain the structure of the original volumes and keep their original shape on show, unifying them through a slab perforated by a central patio that fills the social spaces with light which are located on the ground floor. A garden roof finish offers a new intimate green space to all rooms and private areas of the house.

With regards to the interiors of Casa Rio, the architects wanted to deliver a strong contrast between the two floors of the property. On the ground floor there is a more industrial, robust aesthetic which provides the sensation of living inside a granite excavated mass, with a very strong relation with the exterior space. On the upper floor, the geometry of the three original houses is showcased through their finish as pure white volumes, flooded with light. On this floor, the wooden shutters, the white and the wooden floors recreate the feeling of a typical Portuguese country house.


High Quality Architecture


Paulo Merlini architects, by architect Paulo Merlini and Andr√© Santos Silva, are a Portuguese Architecture studio located in Gondomar, Portugal. They support the creative process in their personal motto US IS MORE, which based on the study of the knowledge of human beings as a fundamental basis, has as main concern the will to create spaces that offer people the right stimuli to living well.

Casa Rio is one of their most impressive pieces of residential architecture in our opinion here at The Coolector and we’re big advocates of how well they have made use of an existing structure and brought it well and truly into the 21st century. We can’t wait to see what other projects they bring to life in the next 12 months and beyond.

Leo Davie
Latest posts by Leo Davie (see all)