Before we started planning our house in Madeira, we spoke to three architects (or architectural offices). Everyone was very nice and I can recommend them all, which is why I am writing this post.
German architects in Calheta
The easiest way for us to find an architect was to use a search engine and browse the internet. So we looked for architects in Madeira and immediately found a team of architects who just seemed perfect for us for three reasons: They were in Calheta, very close to our property, they are originally from Germany, which means that we could speak to them in German and the houses they built were absolutely beautiful in our opinion. If you are wondering why these three points are so important to us, you should read this post.
Anyway, this first architecture office we talked to is called Mayer & Selders Arquitectura. You can find their homepage here. What immediately caught my eye was that they designed some of my favorite houses in Jardim do Mar called Uni-Studios.
We sent them an email asking for a meeting and shortly afterwards met one of them (Dirk Mayer) in their office in Calheta. As a side note: Here we saw that you can have an office in the middle of a banana plantation. Dirk later sent us a cost forecast that included everything: the basic project plus application for a building permission and the detailed design. The detailed design is something that we really appreciated because it contains, in addition to all the necessary drawings and documents, a detailed planning and definition of everything that is relevant for the construction, such as elements and materials, planning of selected areas such as the kitchen, bathroom or stairs and the installation elements such as windows, doors, cabinets, railings and so on. Dirk told us that the advantage of having such a detailed plan is that we could use it for our contract with a building contractor. Based on this plan, we would get a cost estimate from the contractor, so it can’t (shouldn’t) happen that the construction company would later claim that we would have to pay more than agreed because something costs more – they had the detailed plan and sent us the cost estimate based on it, so they can’t ask for more afterwards.
As most architects, also Mayer & Selders offer a supervision of the construction works where they have a look on and inspect the work every week. For this service we would have to pay every month. In case two construction sides would be inspected at the same time (as we wanted to build simultaneously with our neighbor) it would cost a little less. Note that in addition to the plan from an architect you will need another project for water and electricity, but Dirk told us he could recommend someone here.
Architects for modular houses
Later on we became interested in modular houses. The architects we talked to about building a modular house are called MSB-Arquitectos (their homepage and Facebook). They are located in Funchal, seemed to be very knowledgeable and explained all the different ways of building a sustainable home in Madeira. Everything they told us was very interesting. However, we found out already in our first meeting with them that modular homes cost about the same as building a regular home – and on our property, building a modular home in fixed modules is a difficult task, so it would be even more expensive! Still, I can recommend them to everyone, even if you want to build a regular non-modular house, they can help you as they are architects. They can also do a 3D model, detailed plans and all these things.
Our architect in Madeira
The last architect we talked to is again one based in Calheta, and it is the last one we talked to as we are now working with her. She designed the first house of our local friend / neighbor and lives close by in a very modern villa which she designed herself. The architecture office we are working with now is called ArquiVieira Arquitectos Lda and, like for most companies on Madeira, it is easier to find their Facebook page than their homepage. We met with Luisa Vieira in her office and later also on our piece of land. We gave her a rough idea of what we had in mind and she designed a really nice home and send us a 3D plan. But more on that later. Until then, peace out and lotsa love, Hana.
FOLLOW OUR BLOG
Receive notifications of new content directly by email.