Victor Gubbins Pays Tribute to Le Corbusier with Concrete Beach House on the Chilean Coast


Influenced by Le Corbusier's Villa Savoye, this sculptural concrete residence by Santiago Studio Gubbins Arquitectos perches on the craggy cliffs of the Chilean coastline. Casa Mirador was designed by studio co-founder Victor Gubbins as his own holiday home and it sits on the Tunquén coastline, a couple of hour's drive from the studio's offices in Santiago.

Concrete was cast in wooden formwork to create the simple geometric forms that make up the building, which the architect claims to have borrowed from Le Corbusier's 1931 Villa Savoye in Poissy, France. The resulting board marks were left exposed across the walls, unlike the white-rendered walls of the Modernist icon.

The upper floor of Casa Mirador sits on a concrete podium. It features protruding roof and floor slabs that create cantilevered balconies on either side of the house. Skylights sit in angular protrusions from the ceiling to provide additional lighting.

An inclined walkway leads from the road to one of the residence's elevated terraces, which provide views over both the land and sea. Living spaces, bedrooms and bathrooms are positioned on the upper floor between the two symmetrical balconies, while a changing room and toilet in the base of the structure provide amenities for camping and swimming excursions on the beach.

A spiral staircase winds through a double-height atrium between the living room and roof, granting access to a further terrace on the building's flat roof. The residence was designed by the architect as an escape from the growing commercialisation of the nearby town of Cachagua, and a retreat from his Santiago-based office.

The area is also home to an idyllic residence perched on a cliff top and a house with exposed structural ribs, which both boast Pacific views. Studio co-founder Pedro Gubbins previously designed his own family home in a remote part of the Chilean countryside. It too features board-marked concrete and sits atop a stone wall.




Photography is by Marcos Mendizabal