The term chalet has French origin and is accepted by the Royal Spanish Academy (RAE). According to this dictionary, it refers to the building of at least one plant equipped with yard and what is reserved for him single family accommodation. The word chalet It is also admitted by the RAE.
The characteristics that a building must have to be considered a chalet are: a large house that is surrounded by a yard or a adjacent yard. The chalet does not include, however, an interior patio between the rooms.
The first chalets are reported to have originated in Swiss and in other Alpine nations; although shortly after they were also established in other regions. It was about wooden buildings with sloping roof where the shepherds lived. Typically, both they and their relatives were located at the intermediate level, with the cattle located in a developed stable on the ground floor and a barn or hayloft on the top floor. This arrangement was modified with the passing of the seasons. In the summer, the cattle were taken to the alpine pastures, where the shepherds had some kind of hut. By then, the lower floor of the chalet was free for other uses.
Today, chalets are considered those homes that are inspired by this alpine design, even when they are in the city and have no use linked to the cattle raising wave farming.
In the different regions the structures of these buildings were diverse, taking into account not only the materials that were available but also the frequency of rain and other climatic elements that could affect the stability of the construction. Such is so, that different types of chalets are known today, each derived from a particular region, some of them are: American, Anglo-Saxon, Norman, Anglo-Norman, Italian and Germanic style chalets, among others. It is worth mentioning that in each country particular names are also known for them according to the region where they are established.
The material with which they are built It also varies according to the type of chalet, it can be made of stone, masonry or wood.
A curious chalet in the heart of Buenos Aires
He was a Valencian, whose name was Rafael Díaz, the person in charge of build this building So particular in the center of Buenos Aires, a luxury that this man could afford at the end of the 19th century and which we can still enjoy with our eyes.
Is about a Norman type chalet perched on top of a building with nine floors that could be one of the most identifying signs of the city.
Díaz came to Buenos Aires in search of a better life and, after working for several years in a dependent relationship, he founded a furniture house with which he achieved great business successes; thus he became the manager of the largest furniture store in all of Latin America, with the headquarters a few steps from where later the obelisk would be erected.
What Rafael Díaz was passionate about chaletsMainly of the Norman style, he decided to build one on the top of his tent; it was not only one of the first chalets built in a city, but also became famous for being built on top of a tall building.
At the moment, despite the many changes that the city has undergone, the chalet continues there, surviving the inclemencies of the weather, covered by numerous billboards that prevent you from observing the city and even the coast of Uruguay (which could be seen on very sunny days).