About

Bringing a listed building back to life – especially one
from 1666 – is always a challenge to be undertaken with
respect. In the case of Inferniño Apartments, nothing
could have been done without the invaluable help and
vision from both López Rivera Architects and our
builder Otero Pombo. Their collective and collaborative
efforts were crucial not only in planting contemporary
design solutions for this XVII century building but also
in investigating and restoring traditional building
methods that would respect Inferniño’s true essence.
Features like the stairs were carefully restored
and, where new stairs were needed, they were done
according to the same principles and design.

Historic apartments in the center of Santiago de Compostela

This love of detail is something you can appreciate all through Inferniño. Just run your hand over the walls, and it’s reassuring to know that they were restored meticulously with lime mortar applied manually over a structure of pine slats, a traditional technique few bother to use nowadays. And as you walk through the welcoming parlour, where guests can relax and mingle if they so wish, take a moment to look at the heavy cedar wood window-frames resting just millimetres above the stone lintels. This tiny detail is the local, time-honoured way to minimise contact between wood and stone to avoid rot eating into the frames.

 

Lopez Rivera architects

Then, as you sit in the garden, under the shade of the two camellia trees or perhaps dipping your feet in the large granite basin full of water – a gentle nod to the needs of sore-footed caminantes – glance up at the building looking down at you and let your mind’s eye jump back a few hundred years when it would have been full of eager seminary students in awe at learning in the shadow of one of Christianity’s most venerable landmarks. And, as the cathedral’s bells toll, be at one with history as you think that both you and those busy students listened to the same sounds.