platz architecture + design

platz architecture + design


A significant feature of the built environment of Sagres is the washed out white wall , be it the parapet enclosing the settlement on the high cliffs of St. Vincent or the defensive wall of the Sagres Fortress. The walls highlight a poetic interplay between the elegantly meandering edge of the natural headlands and the man made landmarks. They are exposed to the sun, the wind and the waves, thus carrying the patina of time. The beautiful landscape is superimposed by the heritage of mankind. Our intention is to break out of the enclosure of walls and extend them into and beyond the cliff edge. The enhanced cohesion between nature and the man made will be used as a medium to introduce the visitors to the age of exploration, at the same time immersing them to the genius loci.

Once arrived at the parking area attached to the St. Vincent road the visitors encounter a free standing parapet wall guiding them southward along the pedestrian path to the first look-out point. It is where the natural terrain starts to get a slight inclination towards the atlantic. From here the visitor is directed to the promontory’s most easterly point where one can stand on an overhanging terrace with a panoramic view over the promontories of Sagres including the Beliche Fortress. Having arrived at the edge of the cliffs one proceeds with the final stage of the promenade by descending towards the most southerly point.

There the wall wraps into a subterranean protected cavern, the museum and the meeting space, framing the view to Cape St. Vincent. Another emerging wall unfolds to an elevated platform overhanging the cliffs. Resting on the platform the visitor is exposed to the ocean to its full extent. It is a place where one can contemplate while facing the same horizon as the ancient explorers embarking on their journeys with solitude and hope for discoveries of new worlds.

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  • Location

    Sagres, Portugal