The nearly-hidden Ecumenical Chapel in Cuernavaca, Mexico is a place to reflect on the meaning of life. It was a private commission for the firm BNKR Arquitectura, and their third religious-based project. They used previously constructed concepts as inspiration for the design. While their first two chapels centered around life and death, Ecumenical Chapel aimed to strike a balance between them.
The sunken building is accessed by a gently descending spiral ramp. As you walk towards the entrance, the lush vegetation prepares you for quiet time. It’s seen as a journey to the inner self where worries and troubles are left above ground. The client wanted it as a place for non-religious meditation and contemplation, but that you feel something special when inside.
Ecumenical Chapel was meant to be a discreet addition to the client’s yard. The round structure is topped with a pond of water that doubles as a landscape element. It’s filled with daylight and open to the outdoors, but protected by glass bars. The effect is transcendent, and at first glance it looks like the chapel is surrounded by falling water. Upon entering, you are greeted by a large crystal centerpiece on the floor. Enjoy the understated tranquility the space offers and come out feeling renewed.