June 10th, 2010

Ponte Caldela spa

The architecture studio A-cero, directed by Joaquin Torres, will build a hotel and spa near the Verdugo river, in Ponte Caldelas in northern Spain. This region is known for its archaeological sites, very rich in cave paintings, the local architecture, worth mentioning the old bridge over the river, and the thermal spring that gave the town its name, a traditional point on interest in this area.

Starting from these premises, the studio designed a project for this 10.000 square meter plot, where the first consideration was the integration of the new building in to the natural surroundings, respecting the existing native vegetation and natural context.


The project includes a 30-room hotel, relax areas, health treatment consulting rooms, kitchen and restaurant.

It is comprised of a collection of cubic boxes linked by a large corridor that houses the common areas and gives access to the rooms. Each block has been located to preserve the existing trees, integrating them in to the building, protecting the riverside and the existing river channel. The resulting building is marked by its serene character, its protected and dim lighted spaces and pure forms. Water, stone and vegetation are the elements that make up the fundamentals of this design.

The new hotel and spa is located on a long plot along the river, with a slight North-South orientation and elongations to the N.E. and S.E. and a difference of levels that reaches the 7 metres. The slope is solved by the use of small stone walls, creating terraces, following the traditional construction system of the region. The use of terraces also creates a spatial continuity between the hotel, the gardens and the river edge.

A natural source of sulphurous thermal waters having therapeutical properties exists on the location; it had already been used in the old spa that used to function in the same place.

The building runs along the riverside at different levels, assuming the terrain’s natural topography, and makes use of traditional forms, like the sloping roofs, and local natural materials such as wood and stone, including the use of water as a design element in the whole of the intervention.

The original vegetation was considered as one the main design constraints, as it has been treated with maximum respect, making the building “embrace” the trees as it occupies the empty areas. The river is the main subject of the project, preserving its appearance and making the most of the views it offers have been the most important concerns in the design process, the existing channel that runs along the river is preserved and integrated into the new landscape design as a guiding element.

Other architectural elements, such a small temple, have been preserved; the traditional building materials of the region, such as the stone from nearby quarries and local woods, dominate the new building’s image and have been used throughout in its design.

From the early design stages, the decision was made to preserve the linear character of the plot, creating a disperse building through the use of interconnected modules. This form permitted creating a protection barrier on the side of the existing road, isolating the river edge, and to generate an more permeable and transparent façade on its side, that blends with the surroundings.

Nowdays, this project has been stopped for reasons beyond our control. You can see several photographs showing the present conditions of the building.   


Posted in proyectos. 7 Comments.
Comment from juan manuel

me gusta todo cual es el precio total de la obra

Comment from Maria Esther Rodríguez Gómez

Que lástima que esté Paralizada la obra, El edificio es Precioso,con independencia para los posibles clientes y el Paisaje Idílico y Relajante…Ojalá que pueda Ejecutarse en su totalidad…UN PROYECTO MUY LINDO Y NECESARIO EN ESTOS DIAS…

Comment from Mari Carmen Prieto

Me encanta!!!

Comment from juan manuel bernal parodi

Un proyecto bonito y saludable en un entorno magico, magia como la que oseeis vosotros. Un saludo

Comment from juan manuel bernal parodi

Este es mi entorno, Planos, puntales, problemas, encofrados, esperemos que no sufra mucho esa estructura si ha quedado a la interperie, seria una lastima y otro gasto de sanearlas. Ojala se retomen

Comment from carmen fernandez

siempre que respate el paraje natural y el ecosistema¡CUANTA VIDA DARIA ESE BALNEARIO A UN PUEBLO TAN BELLO.SEGURO QUE EUROPA NOS VA AYUDAR AREALIZAR ESE SUEÑO¡¡¡¡¡¡¡¡¡¡¡¡¡¡¡¡¡¡¡¡¡

Comment from jose manuel

Es de lamentar que esta preciosa obra no se haya terminado,por meter la nariz los de siempre,soy de esa bonita CIUDAD, aunque vivo fuera (MIJAS),haber si nues-tro genial ALCALDE,Sr.PERFECTO, encuentra una soluccion, y todos disfrutemos,todos los años voy,saludos.