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Green Architecture – Asian Influence in Guanacaste’s Tropics
By Oliver Von der Weid

Many houses in Costa Rica have designs that take their inspiration from traditional architecture from around the world.

This is very positive as it is injecting a lot of creativity in our landscape. But at the same time, these different architectural styles have been created in correspondence to climate and environment that can be far away from what we encounter in Costa Rica in general and Guanacaste in particular.

I would like to talk about a house that I found riding near Playa Negra which I believe is a good example of a house inspired by a given architectural style but that adapt itself to the climate of Guanacaste.
As you can see from the many different slopes of its roofs, this house is assuredly inspired by Asian architecture. But what make this house really special are its proportions and the choice of materials.
The main body of the house is made out of wood with a pillared structure, leaving the ground floor largely open like a big terrace. It gives the building an impression of lightness that is accentuated by all the glass panels in the façade. In fact, all the elements of the façade are sliding glass doors allowing the living room and kitchen to open to the exterior and make the house like it is on stilts.

This feature of having the building elevated also allows effective ventilation under the house and keeps the interior spaces cool. In addition to this, a detached second roof allows the hot air that rises inside the house to escape through the opening.

Once inside the house, your attention is drawn to the ceiling and its unique structure. Original Chinese roofs have multiple rafters to allow the roof to have different slopes at different part of the roof. But in this case, the rafters are made of a single wood piece spliced to form a curve and to follow the slope of the roof. This distinguished curved ceiling is very elegant and reminds of the interior of an old wood sailing boat.

Sustainability is sometimes pushed aside as clients and professionals are focusing on the design of the house, and at the same is true also the other way around. So it is nice to find buildings where both the ecological and the esthetic factors are present and perfectly dealt with.



More Nature News

Earth Day in Nosara – 500 trees were planted at Guiones beach in a community effort

Community members and environmentalists of all shapes, sizes, ages and nationalities came out to lend a helping hand at the community tree-planting event on Saturday, June 5th . The event was organized by the Tourism Council of Nosara, ICE and the Ostional chapter of the Ministry of Environment and Energy (MINAE). More >

Nosara Wildlife Wants Your Home!

As anyone can guess, running a large organization to treat injured and/or orphaned wild animals and return them back into the wild, takes a lot of time, dedication,and....money.
Several local homeowners have decided to help support this effort by donating the commission on the sale of their home to Nosara Wildlife. Bill and Nancy Kanz and Dan Ray have both said that if Nosara Wildlife brings them a buyer, the commission on the sale will go directly to Nosara Wildlife!

This is a wonderful opportunity for the seller to help make a difference in the Nosara Community by supporting the efforts of Nosara Wildlife in addition to preserving its wildlife. We're looking for more home owners who are selling their homes (or lots!) to consider this program. After all, you will be getting more exposure for your home at no extra cost to you!

Please visit: www.nosarawildlife.com to see the Kanz' and "DRay's" homes. We'd love to include yours! Please contact Steve or Vicki Coan if you would like to join our program and help make a difference!

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