A Tijuana Architect Puts Mexican Design on the Map
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Tijuana and modernist architecture seem like an oxymoron, but architect Jorge Gracia of Gracia Studio —with offices in both Tijuana and San Diego—is quickly changing that perception. Gracia, a graduate of Tijuana's Universidad Iberoamericana Noroeste, has been in the news for his award-winning pre-fab dwellings for Endemico, a winery with guest cabins located in Baja's Valle de Guadalupe, located on a natural reserve 90 minutes south of San Diego. Drawing on local materials and tradesmen, Gracia created twenty cabins that blend seamlessly into the mountainside overlooking the vineyards on the valley floor below. For more information and cabin reservations, go to Hotel Endemico . Above: Gracia had the Corten steel cabins, which are intended to gain a a weathered patina over time, pre-constructed in Mexicali then trucked in and installed on the mountainside. Above: The entrance to the winery serves a as reception are for guests, with the cabins on the hill above. Above: The winery overlooks vineyards on the valley floor in a region that is home to some of Mexico's largest wineries. Above: The cabins are built on raised platforms tucked into the side of the mountain, causing minimal environmental impact on their surroundings. Above: Gracia chose steel and concrete for the materials as they are plentiful and the quality of wood is not great in Mexico. Above: Each cabin is 20 square feet in size and is minimally furnished. Above: Local tradesmen built the custom fixtures and furniture. Above: There is wi-fi in each cabin but no telephone service. Walkie talkies are used for the latter. Above: A wooden deck leads off each cabin. Above: A Mexican Kiva surrounded by chairs, custom made by Gracia Studio. Above: A swimming pool built to blend in with the surrounding boulders. Above: The poolside bar. Above: A shaded area by the pool.