El Nido de Quetzalcóatl – Naucalpan, Mexico - Atlas Obscura

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El Nido de Quetzalcóatl

An Aztec snake god has taken the material form of an apartment complex. 


Northwest of Mexico City the feathered Aztec serpent god Quetzalcoatl has been turned into a series of condos.

Located among the lush natural ravines of Naucalpan, Mexico, Quetzalcoatl’s Nest is a fantastical snake-shaped structure that includes ten separate apartments spread over 16,500 square feet. Designed by renowned Mexican architect Javier Senosiain, the residence is an exploration of ‘organic architecture’ that takes its design inspiration from nature and aims for minimal impact to the environment.

Working on the irregular-shaped land, which is filled with caves and vast tracts of oak trees, proved challenging but inspirational for Senosiain, who looked at the natural shape of a cave mouth and saw an animal aspect. With this in mind, the architect built a magnificent 165 x 20 foot serpent’s head, the gaping maw of which is shaped from the site’s biggest cave. Despite the obvious addition of a massive snake house, the foliage and natural surroundings remain almost untouched by the complex. The only alterations made were considered necessary for safety and construction allowing Senosiain to stay true to his organic architecture ethic.

The twisting walkways of Quetzalcoatl’s Nest provide some pretty spectacular views of the ravines and canyons so long as you don’t mind standing in the jaws of an Aztec snake god.

Update: As of July 2019, this location can be accessed through overnight rental stays. There are events planned for the public throughout 2019, as the park plans to become fully accessible to the public in the coming years. 

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