Ec(cont)ological Tourism

Project type: Accessible/social housing, hotel cabins, mobile space

Project location: Osa, Costa Rica / Adaptable to humid tropical zones

Winner of an Honorable Mention in the “Re-thinking the Future Sustainability Awards 2014,” Residential Building Concept.


We do not have the right to think in design biotechnological structures, robotic systems facades or spatial towers, if we are not capable to provide a roof for every single family; if we are not capable to give nature more resources than which we get from her.

When we talk about accessibility for all, we should also talk about accessibility of low resources people to the different means of production and services, in this punctual case, the tourism.

*About the use of containers

The use of containers does not correspond to a bio-ecological architecture discourse. Its (re)use is, from a conceptual point, a faster respond to its abandon, or to its limited recycling process, as well as the factors of transport, decreased costs and construction process. If the architecture created from containers do not receives meticulous precautions since its conception, it will become an expensive long-term work in terms of comfort and maintenance due to its steel properties. The container, by nature, is not an environmentally friendly material.


The project attempts to be a self-sufficient prototype that can be used to be hotel cabins, accessible and decent housing, or mobile spaces. Among the design strategies I elevated the main structure from the ground (due of the humidity). I also added a roof with a high enough slope for the easier water evacuation (it rains a lot in the rainy season). I take advantage reusing the rainwater to the water treatment for toilets and sinks, and at the same time to irrigate harvest and fields. As enclosure it was important the use of petatillo (a wooden mesh) to allow cross ventilation, crucial due the high temperatures of this zone.