If you decided to do your internship in Fernando Menis studio,you could experience much more than acquire architectural knowledge. Here in Tenerife, the largest island in the Canary Islands as an intern you will experience thereal inside-world of an architecture bureau. That is why after months of improving professional skills in the office our current interns of architecture went for a road trip around Tenerife island to get to know closer some of Fernando Menis’ works. They had the opportunity to see, touch, and feel already made-projects, which before that they just saw as models or in pictures.
This time we visited three of the projects made by Fernando Menis on the Tenerife island. The choice of the places visited were made specially because of specific specialization of our current interns. Two of them are specialized in the landscape architecture that’s why we chose to see not only Magma Art & Congress but also Parque del Drago and Plaza España in Adeje.
First stop was Magma Art & Congress center where our interns could see the building which appears as a reference point among nondescript buildings. The Concept for the building was to establish a relationship between semi-desert surrounding and proximity of the sea.
Building conducts thirteen geometrically shaped blocks with functions such as toilets, cafeteria or offices. As a whole they create a light movement that generates aflow of the roof, outlining the spaces in every direction. Between pieces, there are multifunctional public halls.
After that our trip went to Plaza España in Adeje, which is the main town in the south of Tenerife island. The proposed design aimed to create a meeting point between locals and tourists and also between nature and city. The concept had to incorporate with existing values, promoting a cultural and touristic attraction.
The plaza’s layout covers old part of the Adeje town next to atouristic attraction known as El Barranco del Infierno, strikingly deep ravine. Before Fernando Menis work there was small plaza under the shadow of a big tree and some housing ruins. The project connects the mountain landscape with the historical heritage, the Church and natural image of the village.
The last stop in our intern’s tour around the island was The Drago park. The Drago, Dracaena Drago, is an endemic tree species from the Canary Islands, whose slow growth makes it similar to baobabs. The Drago budded on the edge of a ravine known as El Río and is now protected from the wind by the houses of the “Drago town” itself. The tree is more than 16m high and has a base of about 20m in circumference. During the years the environment of this flora has changed a lot and got deforested.
Fernando Menis’ project, set together with his former partners and winner of a call for the rehabilitation of the environment of the tree, in 1984, proposed to regain the original nature of the place, freeing both sides of the ravine where the old road used to go through and replanting the Parkland with primitive native species in the areas where they grow naturally. On this basis, the project traced the optimal paths to walk around the ensemble of the spectacular tree.