[Text as submitted by architect] “The tea room reflects on a minimal architecture that can integrate, understand and be part of its environment; maintaining a balance between the new and the existing in order to generate spaces for sharing”. The project is located in an agricultural area of Baba canton – Los Rios province – Ecuador, surrounded by local flora and fauna, it rests above a water channel. Don Pepe, an elderly adult, maintains the habit of having a cup of tea and coffee with his family every afternoon and has been doing so for years. The objective was to maintain this tradition within a space that generates a family connection which together with nature is able to adapt to various daily uses.
The room, with dimensions of 8m x 4m, rises over a water channel, resting on two pre-existing concrete structures that were to be used for the construction of a bridge. The room is configured from its envelope with a basic system of wooden trusses extracted from the same site, built with local labor. The use of static and mobile glass panels allows the project to open up to the environment and blur the built boundary, giving continuity to the landscape. The flexible program is complemented by a multifunctional counter and a bathroom.
The view from the inside is finished with folding lattice doors that open onto the terrace/balcony, where a folding handrail defines the last limit of the project. This, together with the river stone side stairs, being able to sit and have a direct connection with the water is possible. The tea room emerges as a gesture to understand the possibilities of an open space that lives in an environment of natural wealth. It is established as a flexible space, where morning yoga, weekend visits, afternoon tea and Sunday football matches can all be held in one space.