Tactile, experiential, and holistic, the work of Rene Gonzalez Architects (RGA) demonstrates a belief in the inseparable connection between nature and architecture, creating spaces that are both fully integrated and in harmony with their environment.
Photo courtesy of Anna Huix
How We Think
RGA is especially attuned to environmental issues that are affecting the world, and which will drastically alter design practice in the coming years. The firm has received widespread attention for its efforts to respond to these emerging conditions and these projects reveal their commitment to embrace and celebrate both the beauty and challenges of the environment in which they are located. The Prairie Avenue Residence in Miami Beach, an elevated house designed to address various challenges of sea-level rise was featured in The New York Times and the BBC Miniseries The World’s Most Extraordinary Homes and in 2023, acclaimed Mexican Publisher, Arquine released a bi-lingual book focused exclusively on the Prairie House entitled, Not the Little House on the Prairie / (No) la pequeña casa en la pradera.
What We’ve Done
The firm’s work includes museum, gallery spaces, hospitality, and retail as well as award winning residential projects. RGA is known for its interdisciplinary approach which combines architecture, interior architecture, landscape design and product design to create cohesive and integrative projects. For example, the Cisneros Fontanals Art Foundation (CIFO) merges both architecture and product design with more than one million custom Bisazza Bamboo glass mosaic tiles enveloping its primary façades. The diversity of projects includes the international competition winning design for CasaCuba cultural center at Florida International University and the North Beach Community Center which was designed to satisfy the needs of a diverse demographic while improving their civic health, enjoyment, and fellowship. A notable residential project, Indian Creek Residence, twice broke the residential sales records in Miami Dade County, first in 2019 at $47 million and again in 2021 for $50 million clearly illustrating the power of design as an investment differential. Other industrial design projects include a furniture collection called “Hammock” for Paola Lenti.
Rene Gonzalez Architects has received a number of prestigious awards, including two from the American Institute of Architects. He was the first Miami architect in more than 60 years to be honored twice by the organization for projects in his adopted hometown. Rene is also the recipient of AIA Miami’s 2012 H. Samuel Kruse Silver Medal for Design and the firm received AIA Miami’s 2011 Firm of the Year award. RGA has been honored with a total of twelve Miami AIA Awards, one Florida AIA Award, Interior Design magazine’s Best of the Year Award for retail design, Metropolitan Home’s Home of the Year Award for design excellence, University of Florida School of Architecture’s 2010 Alumni Design Excellence Award and has been named by Condé Nast’s House & Garden as one of 50 designers internationally that represent the future of design. His firm’s work has been published in over 250 international, national and local publications including The Wall Street Journal, The Financial Times, Architectural Digest, Oprah, O at Home and Wallpaper. In July 2018, Monacelli published their first monograph, Rene Gonzalez Architects: Not Lost In Translation.
How We Care
RGA also has a profound commitment to their community and has contributed key exhibition projects such as the third installation of the RED Auction which raised over 10 million dollars, with matching funds from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation to support the fight against AIDS. RGA also partnered with Diller Scofidio + Renfro to co-design the competition entry for the Pulse Memorial and Museum in Orlando to create a safe and joyful space of their LGBTQ colleagues to return and honor those precious lives lost. He has also served his community by chairing the joint City of Miami Beach Design Review and Historic Preservation Board, The Wolfsonian – Florida International University (FIU) Board and is an Honorary Trustee at MOCA.
To empower the next generation of architects Rene has also lectured and taught architecture and design at UCLA, University of Virginia, University of Florida, University of Miami, Florida International University, Universidad San Francisco de Ecuador, Universidad Central de Venezuela and most recently at UNAM and Tecnologico de Monterrey in Mexico.