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Glass Concrete Rainforest Retreat

The Brazilian studio Atelier Branco has completed a glass house called Casa Bibliotheca in the middle of a rainforest in São Paulo with a roof terrace on which the resident can “read and smoke a cigar while looking at the stars”. It was created for a philosopher who wanted a private space for reading and thinking.

Located on a slope in the Atlantic Rainforest – a forest along the Atlantic coast of South America – it has a thick concrete roof that forms the base of a large 200 square meter terrace for enjoying nature in the middle of the Atlantic Rainforest. Wooden boards are laid in diagonal patterns to mark the deck, with a pool of water flowing around the perimeter.

In-situ concrete, poured in a single working day, forms the main structure of the house, including the roof, step foundation and pillars. Concrete steps also flank both sides of the property and lead to the roof. Huge glass walls with slim steel frames extend between the roof and the base and offer a view of the forest from inside the house.

Casa Bibliotheca is distributed over the three levels leaving the site. The concrete structure is exposed and wooden floors are added throughout to create continuity between the different areas. On the lower level there is an open kitchen as well as a living and dining room with a glass door on the front wall that opens outwards. The middle floor forms a reading nook and a study with a large bookcase along the back wall. Doors in the glass walls on either side lead to the outside stairs. On the third level there are two bedrooms with en-suite bathrooms with exposed concrete surfaces.

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