The AIR VILLA, designed by Haiko Cornelissen Architecten, reinvents the vacation house by minimizing energy consumption and maximizing exposure to nature. Haiko Cornelissen Architecten announced today that the greenest villa in Panama, the AIR VILLA, will start construction in 2014. On hot summer weekends in Panama, city dwellers routinely exchange the heat and bustle of the city for the peace of their countryside vacation homes. But strangely, instead of enjoying the beautiful nature and wonderful climate, the typical Panamanian vacation house is an air-conditioned bunker completely isolated from the surroundings.
To break with this unsustainable phenomenon, Haiko Cornelissen Architecten was asked to design a new generation vacation house in Cerro Azul, twenty minutes outside Panama City. Together with local architect Casis Arquitectos, the team created the greenest villa in Panama: a house that minimizes energy consumption while maximizing exposure to the wonders of the natural environment. The concept of the AIR VILLA is to take advantage of the comfortable year-round temperature in Cerro Azul of 24ºC (76ºF) and merge the house with its surroundings.
Therefore all functions are lined up along the southern edge of the property to maximize exposure to each and all functions are carved out in section. This principle of Form Equals Function allows spaces to operate both outside, inside and in any in‐between condition. Depending on the time of the day, weather and needs, the user can determine how much each individual space is merged with its surrounding by sliding panels in or out.
Inspired by indigenous Panamanian houses, cross ventilation cools the house while local wood and stones are used to minimize the carbon footprint of the building. LED lighting, solar energy and a hot water pump minimize the energy consumption of the building. As a result the AIR VILLA combines the comfort of contemporary design and technologies with an indigenous balance between house and surrounding.Location: Panama Architect: Haiko Cornelissen Architecten