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A Glass House On The Slopes Of A Mexican Volcano

Casa Etérea in San Miguel de Allende, Mexico.

Courtesy Casa Etérea

Mirror, mirror, on all of the walls? That’s definitely not right, but Casa Etérea is some type of fairytale. Just outside of San Miguel de Allende, the sustainably-built Casa Etérea (meaning Ethereal House) is a modernist refuge encased in mirrored panels. Like a mirage, the structure transforms from celestial to terrestrial between dusk and dawn, echoing the skies and landscapes surrounding.

Casa Etérea in San Miguel de Allende, Mexico.

Courtesy Casa Etérea

For Singaporean owner and designer Prashant Ashoka, the property (which was his first foray into architecture and design) is more than a photo opportunity; it’s an experience. “Being immersed in raw nature is a very spiritual experience and I wanted to create an abstract house that was inspired by the wild, and that also transformed along with the changing seasons,” says Ashoka, “My goal was to create an experience that would evoke a sense of awe for nature, so that people would hopefully contemplate their relationship with the natural world.”

Courtesy Casa Etérea

He also wanted to honor San Miguel de Allende’s history of being a retreat for creatives—such as Beat Generation writers Neal Cassady and Jack Kerouac—and draw streams of tourists to other areas of the UNESCO World Heritage city. “I wanted people to experience a different side of San Miguel de Allende,” he says, “where they could be immerse in the beautiful Bajio mountains that flank the city.”

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