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Sumit Singhal
Sumit Singhal
Sumit Singhal loves modern architecture. He comes from a family of builders who have built more than 20 projects in the last ten years near Delhi in India. He has recently started writing about the architectural projects that catch his imagination.

Pachacamac hill House in Peru by Longhi architect

August 16th, 2011 by Sumit Singhal

Article source: Longhi architect

A RETIREMENT HOME for a couple of philosophers

In the old days in Peru the selection of the site for a specific Inca building (use) was the most important action to be taken, only when found the right site is that they follow-up with the intervention which usually was very little in order to produce a great building (Temple of the sun and Temple of the moon in Machu Picchu).

Bird Eye View (Images Courtesy CHOlon Photography)

  • Architect: Luis Longhi / Longhi architect
  • Project name: Pachacamac Hill  House
  • Location: Pachacamac, Peru
  • Function: Single House
  • Project team: Veronica Schereibeis, Carla Tamariz, , Christian Bottger
  • Photography: CHOlon Photography, Elsa Ramirez, Juan Solano

East Elevation (Images Courtesy CHOlon Photography)

  • Client: a couple of philosophers
  • Construction: LONGHI ARCHITECT / Hector Suasnabar
  • Design date: 2006
  • Completion date: 2009
  • Area: 480 sqm

East tunnel library at studio (Images Courtesy CHOlon Photography)

In our days seldom people follow that order usually the “need” comes first and latter the search of the site.

In the case of Pachacamac house I know the order was as in the old days the clients got in love with the site to do something only later on when they learned that it would be the place to spend their last days is that they understood the magnitude of their decision.

East View (Images Courtesy CHOlon Photography)

Only 40 Km. south of Lima at an undeveloped region near pre-Inca remains is located this small hill surrounded by bigger mountains, perfect site if we follow a Peruvian tradition to always look for a protector or “Apu” in the surroundings. The lack of electricity and water sewage systems in the area helps the visitor find other type of   energy transmitted by the place itself which is evident when one walks and feels a special communication with it. This fascinating communication with the earth and its components had been a constant guide for the development of the project.

East walls looking north (Images Courtesy CHOlon Photography)


The job of an architect is that of interpreting the dreams of the client, the most interesting the client is the better opportunities the architect has to do his work.

When as an architect one finds himself interpreting philosophy the results come as fascinating unexpected architecture meaning architecture that is difficult to plan before the beginning of construction, one in which many design decisions take place during construction. The development of this “process” occurs only when the client gives the architect total freedom to design and build.

The clients for the Pachacamac house are a couple of philosophers now discovering spaces in their house which can transport them to their memories both from their past and from their future.

East Side (Images Courtesy CHOlon Photography)


The intervention in untouched environment at the coast of Peru, have helped me understand that in order to achieve successful architecture in natural sites, it is fundamental to listen to the environment and to establish a relationship with it, this relationship is similar to any other type of relationships between humans, it can be direct, sophisticated, romantic, respectful, sane or insane.

Entrance looking (Images Courtesy CHOlon Photography)


The response to the site was to bury the house inside the hill, trying to create a balanced dialogue between architecture and landscape, where inside / outside becomes a constant interpretation of materiality with a strong sense of protection and appreciation of the dark and the light.

A glass box sticks out of the hill symbolizing architectural intervention on untouched nature.

Entrance plaza (Images Courtesy CHOlon Photography)

Female Fire Place (Images Courtesy CHOlon Photography)

Male entrance (Images Courtesy CHOlon Photography)

Male fire place (Images Courtesy CHOlon Photography)

Windows at bedroom two (Images Courtesy CHOlon Photography)

South North exhibit gallery corridor (Images Courtesy CHOlon Photography)

Studio looking through west tunnel library (Images Courtesy CHOlon Photography)

West Side (Images Courtesy CHOlon Photography)

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Category: House

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