John Lautner Architecture in Acapulco

Modern Architecture: John Lautner Arango House in Acapulco Mexico as photographed by Alan Weintraub.

Modern Architecture: John Lautner Arango House in Acapulco Mexico 1973 as photographed by Julius Shulman.

Modern Architecture: John Lautner Arango House in Acapulco Mexico 1973.

Modern Architecture: John Lautner Arango House in Acapulco Mexico 1973.

Modern Architecture: John Lautner Arango House in Acapulco Mexico 1973.

Modern Architecture: John Lautner Arango House in Acapulco Mexico 1973.

Modern Architecture: John Lautner Arango House in Acapulco Mexico 1973.

Modern Architecture: John Lautner Arango House in Acapulco Mexico 1973.

Modern Architecture: John Lautner Arango House in Acapulco Mexico 1973.

Modern Architecture: John Lautner Arango House in Acapulco Mexico 1973.

Modern Architecture: John Lautner Arango House in Acapulco Mexico 1973.

Modern Architecture: John Lautner Arango House in Acapulco Mexico 1973.

Modern Architecture: John Lautner Arango House in Acapulco Mexico 1973.

Modern Architecture: John Lautner Arango House in Acapulco Mexico 1973.

From "Infinite Space," John Lautner's Arango/Casa Marbrisa, a 1973-built residence in Acapulco Guerrero. Photo: Sara Sackner (producer), courtesy of Googie Company


Modern Architecture: John Lautner Arango House in Acapulco Mexico 1973.

Modern Architecture: John Lautner Arango House in Acapulco Mexico 1973.

The Architecture of John Lautner 
Universe Architecture Series

 John Lautner is recognized as one of the foremost architects who practiced at the height of the modern movement. John Lautner's highly personal designs for homes are known for their poignant originality as well as their ties to Frank Lloyd Wright's theories of organic architecture. As a student of Wright's, John Lautner continued his tradition but branched out–many of his designs, such as the Chemosphere, the Monsanto House and the Arango/Marbrisa House, have become icons of organic modern architecture in their own right. The John Lautner Marbrisa House in Acapulco is an icon of mid century modern architecture.  Arguably the pinnacle of John Lautner's architectural career and one of the most beautiful icons of modern architecture.  The vast (25,000 sq.ft) "Marbrisa" in Acapulco was built for Mexican supermarket magnate Jeronimo Arango in 1973 and was jointly designed by John Lautner and the Belgian born Helena Arahuete during her first year with the firm.  Perched on a hilltop site, with uninterrupted views across the whole of Acapulco Bay, the main living quarters are surmounted by a large open terrace with spectacular views of the beach and bay, encircled by a "sky moat" which snakes around its edge; the terrace is itself topped by a huge, sweeping semi-circular angled 'shade' made of poured concrete.


John Lautner Arango House / Casa Marbrisa is perhaps our favorite modern dream house! The design of John Lautner's Arango House was inspired in the natural features of the site, the sense of space, ocean and sky. John Lautner created this house in combination with Helena Arahuete. This icon of mid century modern space age organic architecture was created in 1973. This fabulous modern house is located in Acapulco Mexico. It has a whopping floor space: 25,000.00 square feet. The house is in a very steep lot overlooking the Acapulco Bay. The upper floor is a large open terrace surrounded by a cantilevered moat/railing pool that seems to overflow into the ocean below, creating a feeling of infinite space. The moat is wide and deep enough to allow for swimming. The curved, sloping concrete roof is anchored into the hill at one end, then sweeps over the house and the driveway and returns to the hill at the opposite end. The roof is low on the hill side and high on the Bay side, allowing a great view of the sky and the ocean. The enclosed family room and bedrooms are located in the lower floor, facing the Ocean, with a continuous planter/railing along the edge of the decks.


Image credits: John Lautner Estate, Julius Shulman, Sara Sackner,