Immerse yourself in the architectural beauty of Casa Flotanta, a luxury villa that showcases how design can blend harmoniously with nature. Nestled in the heart of the Costa Rican rainforest, this treetop masterpiece crafted by Studio Saxe demonstrates how innovative design can create an unparalleled experience with its suspended pods, breathtaking vistas, and a perfect blend of art meets functionality. Ascend through this architectural marvel in this story featured in the Graphis Journal.
Is there a better way to experience the sunrise than atop the trees in a luxury villa that provides a broad vista of mountains, forests, and the ocean? With Casa Flotanta, this is just scratching the surface of the amazing experiences that visitors encounter during their stay.
Casa Flotanta is nestled within the Costa Rican rainforest and takes the concept of a treehouse to extreme new heights, literally and figuratively. Its location above the tree line of a 1.5-acre stretch of jungle is sure to give even the most dedicated urbanite a yearning to abandon city life. Animal lovers may never want to step off the property again, thanks to the many monkeys, sloths, iguanas, and tropical birds that nestle among the property’s branches.
However, even if it weren’t perfectly placed in a stunning location, Casa Flotanta would still stand out for its inspiring design. It’s made up of three pods on stilts that are interconnected with walkways, bridges, and stairs. The main living area pod is below the two others and boasts open-plan living lounges, handcrafted sofas, a gourmet chef’s kitchen, a gas barbecue, a solid teak dining table, hammocks, and, best of all, a saltwater infinity pool. Tucked away in this pod is a double bedroom, which may be smaller than the other bedrooms but still offers an ensuite and plenty of roaming space. Above this living area pod are two master bedroom pods. Both of these are equipped with an ensuite spa bathroom and louvered wood concertina door that opens onto a huge terrace with plenty of seating space, allowing for maximal enjoyment of the surrounding landscape.
Based on photos of the villa, it’s easy to believe that Casa Flotanta is located deep, deep in the heart of the jungle. But in actual fact, the opposite is true. The property is located within the Nicoya Peninsula, in the town of Playa Hermosa, which literally translates to “beautiful beach.” The beach in question is just a five-minute walk away from Casa Flotanta and is accessible via a secluded path. Playa Hermosa’s water is warm and wavy throughout the year, making it ideal for those who love surfing and other watersports. People looking for excitement unrelated to the beach can easily access canopy tours, volcano tours, and national park tours. Of course, other destinations are easily accessible by car from Casa Flotanta. One of these, Santa Teresa, is just a 15-minute drive away and has a number of trendy restaurants and similar amenities while still retaining a small-town feel.
Casa Flotanta is the work of Benjamin Garcia Saxe of the architectural firm Studio Saxe. The property, which was completed in 2016, almost had an entirely different execution. Initially, the firm explored the option of cutting back the soil and creating large retaining walls, which is typical of many buildings in the area. However, by using stilts to create a raised property, Studio Saxe’s construction has had a minimal impact on the surroundings. And ultimately, who can look at Casa Flotanta and think that the firm’s solution was anything other than outstanding?
Studio Saxe lets nature lead design, or to put it another way, it uses nature to inspire its structural forms. The company’s architects have expert knowledge of the Costa Rican environment, allowing them to sustainably source local materials that complement their structures. This approach results in breathtaking sensory experiences. The company was founded by Benjamin Garcia Saxe in 2004. In almost 20 years of existence, the firm’s work has won numerous awards, including the World Architecture Festival’s World’s Best Private House Award in 2010.