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Casa Enso II

HW Studio

San Miguel de Allende, Guanajuato, Mexico

November 2022


Rogelio Vallejo Bores (CEO and Senior architect)


Oscar Didier Ascencio Castro (Department Director and Partner HW Studio), Nik Zaret Cervantes Ordaz (Architec), Antonio Rangel Toral (Director of Engineering and Construction), Luis Luna (Interior designer)


Cem Turgu


Cesar Alejandro Béjar Anaya


In the heart of this arid landscape, where the sun shines intensely and the shadow turns into an oasis, a home is found that doesn't seek to conquer nature but to weave a friendship with it.

The first design gesture was to divide the terrain into four quadrants, separated by two axes that function as paths flanked by robust stone walls that create a protective shadow. As one walks alongside them, the experience is of how the wind cools upon contact with the shadow, a refreshing caress that welcomes.

Each quadrant has a "vocation." The lower right one houses an endemic garden; the lower left, the parking lot, located in the area with the tallest trees to take advantage of the shade for cars.

In the upper right quadrant, there is an office; used for stock market investments, a hostile and unreal digital world. To reach this office, residents must exit and walk towards it. This pilgrimage is an invitation to connect with the desert.

The upper left quadrant houses the house; its program is simple: the living room, dining room, and kitchen are oriented towards a distant mountain. The public area is separated from the bedroom by an intermediate volume that houses the bathroom and dressing room. Finally, a semi-buried bedroom is oriented towards the dense vegetation area to provide privacy.

In this home, architecture and its surroundings merge into a harmonious melody that seeks to help the spirit find peace.


In the heart of the desert, a golden canvas rests under an intense blue sky. Unexpected and tall maguey flowers sprout from the arid land, a reminder of the beauty that emerges in adversity. In this unique landscape, stone rises as a fundamental element for everyone's survival.

There, more than a material, stone is memory. It carries a history that dates back to the times of the ancient indigenous people. In every corner of Guanajuato, from colonial constructions to pre-Hispanic pyramids lying in silence, stone becomes a symbol of cultural identity and a deep connection to the land.

It is the stone of the molcajete and metate, kitchen instruments that shape our sauces and tortillas, witnesses to countless shared meals. It is the stone of Pipila, a hero who, carrying one on his back, repelled the enemy's fire and managed to capture an important stronghold for the Independence of Mexico.

In Guanajuato, stone is the raw material for houses, streets, and squares, an element that defines architecture and urban landscape. It is a symbol of identity and rootedness.

The sturdy walls of this house evoke the strength and resilience of a society pursued by drug trafficking and violence, endured by its people.

This project aims to be a hymn to arid beauty, ancestral memory, and the strength of the spirit of its people.


The evaluation of an architectural work, especially a house, is a complex and subjective process for an architect, involving immersing oneself in the relationship between space and its inhabitants. At the risk of sounding sentimental, we measure the success of a house by the connection forged between the dweller and the architect after the delivery. In the case of the Enso house, the friendship between Adriana and Cem has deepened significantly.

Throughout this friendship, we have been invited to the house on several occasions, observing indicators of the project's performance. Cem's enthusiasm in describing the beauty of native plants and his plan to reforest the garden reflects successful integration with the surroundings. Adriana mentions how her daily walks to the office make her feel more connected to the place, while both show interest and curiosity about architecture, posing frequent questions.

During one of these encounters, we learned that locals refer to the house as "the little oven," due to the taller volume reminiscent of the Jesuit ovens in Mineral de Pozos, a nearby town.

Personally, one of the most touching moments was witnessing a hare enjoying the shade at the end of a stone pathway, between the taller volume and the wall. This scene conveyed the successful integration of the house not only into the physical landscape but also into the social and emotional fabric of its inhabitants.

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