Nestled on the romantic Atlantic coastline, the Boa Nova restaurant and teahouse is one of the architectural landmarks by Alvaro Siza just outside Porto. Now re-opened after restoration it is a must-see place if touring anywhere near Porto this summer.
Close-by there is also the oceanic pool of Leça, another significant design from the 1960s by Siza. Each site demonstrates Siza’s mastery in the way his designs respond to the surrounding nature, but they are both also very different, as Nelson Mota pointed out in a previous article on Porto architecture:
The diversity and abundance of materials used in Boa Nova reveal an almost obsessive exploration of the interplay between volume and substance, a far cry from the stark relationship of copper, concrete and black painter wood of the oceanic pool. However, the essential qualities of both projects are similar. In Boa Nova, as well as in the Leça pools, Siza delivers a clear account of the architect’s role in the delicate dialogue between the artificial and the natural.
Main photo by Fernando Guerra