Mirikina House/

José Cubilla


Project Details



Mariano Roque Alonso / Paraguay



Year (Design/Construction):

2020 / 2021

Area (Net/Gross):

220 m2 / -
Operational Carbon emissions

Operational Carbon emissions (B6) kgCO2e/m2/y:

Embodied Carbon emissions

Embodied Carbon emissions (A1-A3) kgCO2e/m2:

  • Low impact construction. It respects the local flora and fauna and is built with local materials and labour.
  • Rammed earth construction, raised on a rough stone platform. This method is known for its low environmental impact and excellent thermal properties.
  • The house is designed for energy efficiency with wide walls and sufficient perforations for lighting and ventilation. This maintains the necessary penumbra in a humid and very hot subtropical climate.
  • The house uses surface geothermal energy and natural pools.
  • The cross ventilation design which is important to maintain air quality and thermal comfort.

It is a low impact housing on the outskirts of Asuncion very close to the Paraguay river. Understanding the biophysical aspects of the site it seemed important to us to assume a low impact construction with a friendly implantation and with the smallest possible footprint in a low, humid and floodable native forest.

Resolving the vertical housing as an island in this forest and on this special ground respecting the wonderful flora and fauna native to the site.

Capture the energies of the place and add friendly materials to it. We proposed earth and stone in its materiality. The water in its main column and the ecological lagoon and outdoor pool, the fire as a central agglutinator or hearth fire at various levels of the home (yoga room, social room and main bedroom).

The construction system is made of rammed earth or rammed earth that is raised on a platform of rough stone.

The house is very austere, built with local materials and local labour.

The objective was to try to achieve a balance or equilibrium in a beautiful, silent place with a strong connection to nature.

Energy efficiency. Wide walls and just enough perforations for light and ventilation, where we maintain the necessary half-light in a humid and very hot subtropical climate.

The wall is ideal for improving thermal inertia, in addition to its low constructive impact. Superficial geothermal energy and natural pools that decant grey and black water, fire as a primordial element in the central core are other important components in this elementary constructive experience.

The natural lagoon as a response to a poorly absorbent soil.

The floor plan is resolved as a space that is connected vertically by half levels around a central core (water and fire). On the way we discover and sense parts of the beautiful forest and the filtered light, the trees and the trees. Aromas, murmurs and the silence of the place.

The importance of cross ventilation, of the relevant air and oxygen dissolving in this vertical speciality a n d culminating in an open-air terrace connected to the forest, the horizon and the stars are the premises agreed with the client for the creation of this home or spiritual refuge.

We named it Mirikina in homage to the illustrious visitor or forest elf (primate or local monkey) who accompanied us throughout the process and construction with a lot of patience and kindness.


  • Architect: José Cubilla
  • Contributors: Ariel Samaniego, Dahiana Nuñez, Jorge Noreña, Mauricio Rojas Barrail
  • Photography: Luis Ayala



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