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Renovating a Patrimonial House in Cuenca Part 1 – Vlog 12

In the heart of Cuenca, nestled among the historic streets and timeless architecture, lies Casa Malo—a patrimonial house filled with history and character. Join me, Jason, as I chat with architect Sebastian Zeas, who is behind the transformation of Casa Malo. We discuss the intricacies of renovating this iconic structure and discover the delicate balance between preserving its heritage and infusing modern elegance. 

Getting to Know Sebastian

Sebastian Zeas, a seasoned architect and designer with over 15 years of experience, brings a tonne of expertise to the table. A native Cuencano with a master’s degree in architecture under his belt, Sebastian has dedicated his career to shaping the architectural landscape of Cuenca, infusing each project with creativity and ingenuity.

Understanding the Client’s Vision

As we delve into the Casa Malo project, Sebastian emphasizes the importance of client collaboration. Listening attentively to the client’s aspirations and expectations lays the foundation for a successful design process. With Casa Malo, Sebastian crafted a response to the client’s brief, weaving together elements of old-world charm and contemporary flair. 

Navigating Patrimonial Challenges

Renovating a patrimonial house comes with its own set of challenges, as Sebastian aptly explains. Balancing the preservation of historical integrity with the demands of modern living requires a delicate touch and a keen understanding of architectural heritage. Casa Malo, classified as a Level C heritage site, affords some flexibility in design decisions while still necessitating careful consideration of its storied past.

Project Progress and Structural Considerations

With the project underway, Sebastian provides insights into the current status of Casa Malo. Detailed measurements and structural assessments are essential components of the renovation process, ensuring that every modification aligns seamlessly with the original framework. From analyzing existing plans to conceptualizing structural changes, every step needs to be taken with precision and foresight.

Client Engagement and Decision-Making

Sebastian’s collaborative approach extends beyond the drafting table, encompassing ongoing communication with the clients. Regular meetings serve as forums for discussing project progress, soliciting feedback, and refining design elements to reflect the client’s vision. Client input shapes the evolution of Casa Malo into a true reflection of what they want their new home to be.

Construction Challenges and Timelines

Sebastian sheds light on the logistical hurdles inherent in renovating a patrimonial house in el Centro, Cuenca. Strict regulations dictate the timing of supply deliveries and construction activities, necessitating meticulous planning and adherence to schedules. Despite the challenges, Sebastian remains optimistic about completing Casa Malo within a six-month timeframe, allowing the clients to enjoy their newly crafted space.

Blending Old with New: Design Philosophy

At the heart of Sebastian’s design philosophy lies the integration of old-world charm with contemporary sophistication. By leveraging key architectural elements—such as the central fireplace—and using this as inspiration for other elements in the house, Casa Malo will emerge as a unique structure that will add to Cuenca’s rich architectural heritage. 

Other Projects and Contact Information

Beyond Casa Malo, Sebastian and his team are engaged in a myriad of projects spanning Cuenca and its surroundings. Whether crafting bespoke homes or designing churches, Sebastian is dedicated to architectural innovation with a client-first mentality.  

For those seeking to embark on their own architectural journey, Sebastian’s contact information is included below:


As our journey through Casa Malo draws to a close, I’m filled with anticipation for the transformative journey that lies ahead. With Sebastian’s expertise guiding the way, Casa Malo is set to emerge as a testament to the enduring beauty of Cuenca’s architectural heritage.

Feel free to contact Jason to start your own Cuenca real estate journey. 

Further reading:

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