Adriana Carrasco and Juan Heredia, the owners of Cuenca Properties, are amongst the founding partners at ISAM (Inmobiliaria San Alberto Magno), a property developer that believes in the rehabilitation of run-down buildings in the historic center of Cuenca.
The team at ISAM works hard to find derelict buildings in Cuenca old town that have the potential to be converted into comfortable, contemporary and stylish housing projects.
To that aim ISAM has designed and built the following projects:
- Casa Heredia Carrasco
- Casa San Sebastian
- Casa Juan Jaramillo
- Casa de los Frutales
- Casas del Nogal
- Casas del Ciprés
Designed by architect Carlos Espinoza from Surreal Estudio in Cuenca, these are ambitious architectural constructions that attempt a harmonious integration of old and new and make ample use of natural light with patios, terraces, windows and perforations.
“Every time we rehabilitate and restore a house we produce a double effect. On the one hand we add value to the neighbourhood in which our projects are located. On the other, we avoid the construction of yet more new buildings on the outskirts of the city that constantly reduce the scant remaining countryside. It is an effective way to correct the errors that have been made over the last few years,” explains Espinoza, founding partner and architect at ISAM.
All of ISAM’s projects reuse many of the original materials found on site (floors, friezes, columns etc.) and traditional materials with personalised design (stone counters and floor tiles). ISAM has a policy of giving priority to local products and labour-intensive construction methods. “In each and every project we try to use materials and designs that utilize traditional methods that are being forgotten over time,” explains Juan Heredia.
With a city center declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1999, Cuenca was named “the best place in the world to retire” during the same year thus attracting retired foreigners mainly from the United States. After their first collaboration in the construction of Casa Heredia Carrasco overlooking the River Tomebamba and on identifying a shortage of comfortable housing in the center of Cuenca, Espinoza and Heredia founded the company with their partners.
“It is completely absurd that we are wasting the incredible architectural value and urban framework of Cuenca’s center,” highlights Espinoza. “City centers are fragile ecosystems that require action in order to ensure people continue to reside in them. Over the last twenty years the center of Cuenca has suffered a process of deterioration due to the population drain caused by people moving to the outskirts of town.”
Founded in 2009, ISAM is the first property developer in Cuenca to focus exclusively on projects that rehabilitate run-down buildings in the historic center of Cuenca to convert them into private housing projects made up of modern apartments and lofts. The multidisciplinary team at ISAM aims to develop projects that return habitability to the old town. ISAM offers clients a personalised service and accompanies clients throughout the entire process, from construction and selection of materials to interior design.
ISAM’s projects have been featured in The New York Times, Revista Habitar, Diners, Construcción & Diseño, Casas, ARQ and the book 1000x Architecture of the Americas.Take a look at our services, browse our selection of properties for sale or rent in Cuenca and contact us directly if you have any questions.