Casa IMLA: Innovative Design in Porto’s Bairro da Vilarinha

Discover Casa IMLA, a stunning house located in Porto, Portugal. Designed by Luppa Architects in 2023, this property seamlessly integrates traditional features with contemporary extensions, optimizing both light and privacy. Situated in the historic Bairro da Vilarinha, Casa IMLA exemplifies a unique blend of old and new, making it a noteworthy project in modern Portuguese architecture.

Modern two-story house with clean lines, large windows, and a small front yard

Modern living room with sofas, a wooden bookshelf, and sheer curtains.

Modern living room with beige sofa, wooden floors and furniture, and sheer curtains.


Contemporary living room with sliding glass door and outdoor seating.

Modern living room with wooden floors, white walls, and access to outdoor patio.

Contemporary dining room with a minimalistic design and glass table.


Modern kitchen with built-in appliances and a view into a hallway with wooden stairs.

Sleek wooden staircase with minimalist design and curved handrail.

Contemporary living room with warm wood floors and sheer curtains.

Minimalist bedroom with a wooden bed, side table, lamp, and polished hardwood

Minimalist bedroom with wooden flooring and simple furniture.

Modern bathroom with black floor tiles, glass shower, and natural light.

Minimalist home exterior with clean lines and neutral tones.

Contemporary home exterior with large glass doors and minimalist design.

Modern house with large windows at dusk, warm interior lights visible.

About Casa IMLA

A Modern Take on Porto’s Historic Charm

Casa IMLA stands out as a remarkable example of sensitive yet bold architectural intervention in Porto’s Bairro da Vilarinha, a district noted for its post-1958 economic housing. Designed by the innovative Luppa Architects in 2023, this corner house breaks the mold with a strategic extension and relocation of its entrance, pushing the boundaries of design within a historic context.

At its core, Casa IMLA addresses the quintessential challenge of increasing usable space without disrupting the essence of the original structure. The introduction of a two-story volume on the west façade not only permits an expansion of the gross area but also cleverly manipulates the building’s orientation to enhance natural light infiltration. By shifting away from the southern boundary, an inviting indoor patio emerges, serving as a sanctuary bathed in the warm glow of sunlight from the south and west.

Harmonizing Past and Present

The design philosophy guiding Casa IMLA was underpinned by a profound respect for the neighborhood’s architectural lineage. The new addition was envisioned not as a replacement but a complement to the old structure, facilitating a dialogue between different eras of design. This approach is epitomized in the meticulous detailing around where old meets new, ensuring the original home’s character shines through amidst modern enhancements.

Interior spaces within Casa IMLA are thoughtfully crafted to exploit the availability of direct sunlight, a rare luxury in densely built environments. This not only elevates the aesthetic appeal of each room but also promotes a healthier, more vibrant living space.

Luppa Architects’ work on Casa IMLA is a testament to the possibility of contemporary architecture harmonizing with historical context, proving that innovation can coexist with tradition. This project stands as a beacon of modern design principles applied with sensitivity and inventiveness, reinforcing the timeless appeal of Porto’s architectural heritage.

Photography by Ivo Tavares Studio
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– by Matt Watts