Seeking to establish a dialogue with its unspoiled natural context, Brazilian architectural firm Una Arquitetos have completed work on a very impressive rural house called Casa na Mantiqueira, in a small town about 100 miles outside of São Paulo. The house is built on a forest clearing in the foothills of the Mantiqueira Mountains and utilizes the surrounding scenery to maximum effect.

Overtly, the house is two perpendicular sections with the second level suspended somewhat above the lower to create spectacular open spaces along the external terrace, which leads to a pool & garden that encourage outdoor lounging. The lower floor contains a kitchen, lounge, and two guest apartments, each with splendid views, while the upper level holds a large bedroom at each end, also with wide-angle views of the dense surrounding forest.

The visual contrast between the levels are assured with the use of solid concrete on the lower floor and exposed timber and glass for the upper. This impeccable rural house is built on proportions large enough to fit well with the expansive panorama of the surrounding mountains. [via]