Casa Temascaltepec by Robert Hutchison Architecture and JSa Arquitectura

Location: Temascaltepec, Mexico

Area: 3,908 sq. feet

Year: 2020

Project Collaboration between Robert Hutchison Architecture & Javier Sanchez Arquitectos
Project Team: Robert Hutchison & Javier Sanchez, Sean Morgan, Berenice Solis
Structural Engineer: Bykonen Carter Quinn
General Contractor: Mic Mac Estructuras
Photography: Cesar Bejar, Benedikt Fahlbusch, Alberto Kritzler, Laia Rius Solá

A desert house designed for water

This off-the-grid retreat  located in the mountains south of Valle Bravo, approximately two hours west of Mexico City, is strategically sited to provide views towards the 16,500-foot-high Volcan Toluca Mountain. Situated in a nature reserve, a key objective was to create a structure that could operate off the grid through a solar PV array and an on-site water treatment and storage system, working in tandem with the local climate where summers are wet and rainy, and winters extremely dry. 

The residence is conceived as a pavilion that allows for outdoor use year round. A raised concrete plinth clad with local recinto volcanic stone serves as a platform for interior and exterior spaces, while a hovering planted roof is supported by a perimeter colonnade of steel columns. Two-thirds of the pavilion is dedicated to covered outdoor space, allowing all sides of the home to breathe and remain open to the elements in the temperate climate. A detached bathhouse and studio complete the retreat’s ensemble of structures.

Robert Hutchison Architecture

All images courtesy of Robert Hutchison Architecture

Robert Hutchison Architecture

Robert Hutchison is a practitioner, researcher, and educator whose interests and practice overlap the fields of architecture, art and photography. Hutchison received a MArch degree from the University of Washington in 1996, and BS degrees in Structural Engineering and Architectural Engineering from Drexel University in 1990. After working for the Miller|Hull Partnership and serving as a principal of Hutchison & Maul Architecture, Hutchison established the architecture studio Robert Hutchison Architecture. Hutchison is an Affiliate Associate Professor in the Department of Architecture at the University of Washington, where he teaches architectural design studios at the undergraduate and graduate levels. He was the founding Program Director and Lead Instructor for the Architecture in Mexico Studios, based in Mexico City, which he has led in 2010, 2013, and 2015. He has also taught design studios on a periodic basis for Washington State University’s College of Architecture & Construction Management. More


Robert Hutchison Architecture
(206) 414-7226

4010 Whitman Ave. NE
Seattle, WA 98105


Robert Hutchison Architecture

Javier Sanchez Arquitectos


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