A remarkable, totally refurbished semi-detached property in Washington’s premium Burleith area has hit the market. The house has about 3,600 sq ft of living area, a three-story structure, and a large roof deck.
Built in 1912, the property has been completely rebuilt to incorporate an open floor layout, a 64-square-foot skylight, and a three-story solid masonry extension made of cinder block, metal joists, and steel framing.
The outside Pella casement windows installed to the initial shape of the house pay homage to the property’s 105-year legacy.
The first level features a large master bedroom with a walk-in wardrobe and an adjoining master bathroom. The second and third guestrooms each have their separate bathroom. Overall, the design was influenced by Mexican architect Manuel Parra’s space-use philosophy.
Manuel Parra, who is he? Manuel Parra was a busy architect. He created around 500 works, largely in traditional and wealthy neighborhoods of Mexico City, as well as in Acapulco and southern California neighborhoods.
He studied architecture after being encouraged by his uncle, the famed designer Antonio Rivas Mercado, who designed iconic works such as Mexico City’s Parliament Complex and the Monument of Independence.
He developed a distinct architectural style that affected residential buildings in Mexico for generations. His approach was characterized by the organic interplay of forms and spaces in response to terrain features.
His appreciation for natural light can be apparent throughout the house. The use of diverse materials in the building, the utilization of domes, and the development of a romantic and intimate environment with staircases, chimneys, large windows, and so on. Yet he also emphasized the needs of the families who lived in the houses.
However, his style has been seen as a compromise between the extravagant and ornate nationalist design of Mexico.