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A House Of (and to) Worship: The Chapel of La Estancia

Personally, I'm more of a believer in the culture of religion rather than the dogma, but, if you do want to get married in an actual house of worship, this is one of the more modern, private and architecturally unusual settings.

The small Chapel of La Estancia by Bunker Arquitectura.

Since Bunker Arquitctura's site is under construction and I couldn't get more info on this chapel, the article below is courtesy of Wallpaper magazine and the accompanying photos were shot by Meg Inniss and one of the architect's brothers and graphic designer, Sebastian Suárez.

About it
The owners of the colonial-era gardens in Cuernavaca, just south of Mexico City, had built up a business offering wedding packages to young couples, and originally wanted an ersatz colonial-style chapel structure in which to host the ceremonies.

Happily, Bunker persuaded them otherwise, and set to work devising a modern, functional yet undeniably romantic setting for the events. Initial plans for a glass-walled building were opposed by the client, who claimed - quite reasonably - that it would heat up throughout the day and make ceremonies sweaty and unbearable. But Bunker stuck to their guns, explaining that their solution involved a latticework of opaque glass beams, arranged vertically and set apart from one another to create a 'veil' running around the entire structure that allows air to move freely. Above this sits a solid roof, its shape devised by the shearing, pinching and shifting of the original box-shaped volume, forming a simple yet elegant shallow pitch.

The end wall contains a cross set into the glass fins, while the floor is a humble white concrete slab (toned down from the original marble due to budget considerations). The structure replaces the canvas tent that used to be used for the ceremonies, yet retains an alluring air of impermanence and lightness.

Architects Esteban Suarez and Jorge Arteaga and graphic designer Sebastian Suarez, Esteban's brother, started Bunker Arquitectura in 2004 after finishing their studies in Mexico City. Named for their studio - a former bunker - they're currently working on a new residence in Mexico City and the urban planning for the 2011 Pan American Games in Guadalajara.

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