ELE: Areas of the House

This is a sample of an educational article on Spanish as a second language! Note that all our samples are protected by copyright “All Rights Reserved.” To order similar content for your project or platform, contact us. Thank you.

Article Summary

The article “Areas of the House” is a bilingual guide for Spanish and English speakers who want to learn the basic terms related to the different parts of a house or a building. The article provides the Spanish term on the left and the English equivalent on the right, along with a brief explanation of the meaning or usage of each term. The article covers topics such as the elevator, the terrace roof, the bathroom, the toilet, the cellar, the kitchen, the dining room, and the laundry room. The article is useful for anyone who wants to buy, rent, or visit a house or a building in Spain or in an English-speaking country.

Ascensor / Montacargas

Ascensor | Lift
Ascensor | Lift
Ascensor | Lift
Ascensor | Lift
Ascensor | Lift
Ascensor | Lift

An ascensor is a device that transports people or things up and down between the floors of a building or structure. It consists of mechanical, electrical and electronic components that coordinate to make it function. It is usually found in public or commercial buildings, but sometimes it is also installed in private houses. Montacargas is a Spanish word that can be translated into English as forklift, lift, elevator, hoist, or service lift, depending on the context and the region. It is a device or a machine that is used to lift and move heavy objects or people between different levels of a building or a structure. It is different from ascensor, which is usually a passenger elevator or lift that transports people between floors of a building. Montacargas can also refer to a freight elevator or a service elevator that carries goods or materials. Sometimes, montacargas and ascensor can be used interchangeably, especially in American English.

Azotea / Solana / Tejado / Terrado / Terraza

Azotea | Terrace roof
Azotea | Terrace roof
Azotea | Terrace roof
Azotea | Terrace roof
Azotea | Terrace roof
Azotea | Terrace roof

An azotea is a flat roof at the top of a building that can be used for various purposes. People can access it to enjoy the view, dry clothes, install water tanks, cisterns, lightning rods, solar heaters, or TV antennas. Some tall and large buildings may also have helipads or satellite dishes on their azoteas. Solana is a roof or a balcony that receives a lot of sunlight. Tejado is a roof that is usually sloped and covered with tiles or other materials. Terrado is a flat roof that can be used as a terrace or a garden. Terraza is a flat or slightly sloped roof that can be accessed from one or more dwellings and used for various purposes. However, these differences may not be clear-cut or universal, as different regions or countries may use these words differently or interchangeably.

Baño / Cuarto de baño / Aseo / Servicio / Tocador / Lavabo

Baño | Bathroom
Baño | Bathroom
Baño | Bathroom
Baño | Bathroom
Baño | Bathroom
Baño | Bathroom

A cuarto de baño is a room in a house or another residential building that has a toilet, a sink, and either a shower or a bathtub, or both. The most common and general term for a room that contains a toilet, a sink, and a shower or a bathtub is baño. Lavabo or aseo are more formal or polite terms for a room that contains a toilet and a sink, usually for guests or visitors. Lavabo can also refer to the sink itself. Tocador is a term for a room that contains a toilet and a sink, usually for personal hygiene or grooming. It can also refer to a dressing table or a vanity. Servicio is a term for a room that contains only a toilet, usually for public use or in small spaces. It can also refer to the service staff or the service charge. The nuances between these synonyms may depend on the region, the context, and the preference of the speaker.

Bodega / Cava / Bodegón / Cripta / Cueva / Despensa / Silo / Sótano / Subterráneo

Bodega | Wine cellar
Bodega | Wine cellar
Cava | Cellar
Cava | Cellar
Cava | Cellar
Cava | Cellar

A cava is an underground room or chamber where wine or other goods are stored and aged. Bodega can also mean a winery or a wine store. Some cavas and bodegas are dug underground, while others are built above ground. Bodegón is a term for a large winery or a wine store, usually with a rustic or traditional style. It can also refer to a still life painting or a tavern. Cripta is a term for an underground chamber or vault, usually beneath a church or a cemetery, where coffins, sarcophagi, or relics are kept. It can also refer to a cellar or a basement. Cueva is a term for a natural cavity in the earth, especially one that is large enough for human exploration. It can also refer to a cellar or a basement, especially one that is dark or damp. Despensa is a term for a pantry or a larder, a small room or closet where food, dishes, or provisions are stored. It can also refer to the food supply itself. Silo is a term for a tower or pit on a farm used to store grain, silage, or other agricultural products. It can also refer to an underground facility for storing and launching missiles. Sótano is a term for a basement or a cellar, the lowest floor of a building that is partly or entirely below ground level. It can also refer to an underground shelter or bunker. Subterráneo is a term for an underground space or structure, especially one that is hidden or secret. It can also refer to the subway or the underground railway system.

Chimenea / Hogar / Estufa / Repisa / Fogón / Tiro

Chimenea | Fireplace
Chimenea | Fireplace
Chimenea | Fireplace
Chimenea | Fireplace
Chimenea | Fireplace
Chimenea | Fireplace

A chimenea is a fireplace structure that allows the smoke from a fire to escape outside. It can also refer to the place where the fire is made inside a house, usually for heating or decoration. Many chimeneas have ducts or pipes that are not in use but remain as architectural elements of houses unless owners decide to remove them. Hogar is a term for the fireplace or the hearth, the part of the chimney where the fire is made and where the logs or coals are placed. It can also refer to the home or the household. Estufa is a term for the stove or the heater, a device that produces heat or flames for cooking or warming a room. It can also refer to a greenhouse or a hothouse. Repisa is a term for the mantel or the mantelpiece, the shelf above the fireplace where ornaments or other objects are displayed. It can also refer to any shelf or ledge. Fogón is a term for the hearth or the firebox, the part of the stove or the fireplace where the fire is lit and where the fuel is burned. It can also refer to a bonfire or a campfire. Tiro is a term for the flue or the vent, the duct or pipe that carries away the smoke or gas from the fireplace, stove, or furnace. It can also refer to a shot or a pull.

Cocina / Fogón / Horno / Infernillo

Cocina | Kitchen
Cocina | Kitchen
Cocina | Kitchen
Cocina | Kitchen
Cocina | Kitchen
Cocina | Kitchen

A cocina is a room or an area that is specially equipped and prepared for making meals or food. It usually has appliances such as a stove, an oven, a refrigerator, and a sink. A cocina may also be used for dining, entertaining, and laundry. Fogón is a term for the stove or the burner, the part of the kitchen appliance where the fire or heat is produced for cooking. It can also refer to a fireplace or a bonfire. Horno is a term for the oven or the furnace, a chamber or device that produces high temperatures for baking, roasting, or melting. It can also refer to a kiln or a pottery workshop. Infernillo is a term for a portable stove or a camping stove, a small device that can be carried and used for cooking outdoors. It can also refer to a hellish place or situation.

Comedor / Comedero / Refectorio / Tinelo

Comedor | Dining room
Comedor | Dining room
Comedor | Dining room
Comedor | Dining room
Comedor | Dining room
Comedor | Dining room

A comedor is a room or an area where people gather to eat food that is usually connected to the cocina (kitchen) and has tables and chairs for dining. Sometimes, the cocina and the comedor, or the salón and the comedor, are in the same space to save room. Comedero is a term for a feeder or a trough, a container where food is placed for animals to eat. It can also refer to an eatery or a diner. Refectorio is a term for a refectory or a dining hall, a large room where meals are served, especially in a monastery, a convent, or an institution. It can also refer to the meal itself or the community that eats it. Tinelo is an archaic term for an old-fashioned dining room, especially in noble houses or palaces. It can also refer to the tablecloth or the napkin used in the dining room.

Cuarto de lavado / Lavadero / Lavandería

Cuarto de lavado | Laundry room
Cuarto de lavado | Laundry room
Cuarto de lavado | Laundry room
Cuarto de lavado | Laundry room
Cuarto de lavado | Laundry room
Cuarto de lavado | Laundry room

A cuarto de lavado is a room or an area where clothes or other items are washed and dried. It usually has appliances such as a washer, a dryer, and an iron. A cuarto de lavado may be located in the cocina (kitchen) or in another part of the house. Lavadero is a term for a laundry room or a utility room, a place where clothes or other items are washed and dried. It can also refer to a sink or a basin where the washing is done. Lavandería is a term for a laundry or a laundromat, a place where clothes or other items are washed and dried, usually for a fee or with coin-operated machines. It can also refer to the business or the service of washing and drying clothes.

Despensa / Alacena / Vasar / Mueble aparador / Cilla / Almacén

Despensa | Pantry
Despensa | Pantry
Despensa | Pantry
Despensa | Pantry
Alacena | Cupboard
Alacena | Cupboard

A despensa is a room or a closet where food, dishes, or provisions are stored, usually in a cool and dry place. Alacena is a despensa and also a cupboard or a niche in the wall with doors and shelves for storing household items. Vasar is a term for the furniture or the space where the dishes (vajilla) are placed, usually above the sink or the stove. Mueble aparador is a term for a sideboard or a buffet, a large piece of furniture with drawers and cabinets for storing everyday objects, such as cutlery, napkins, or tablecloths. Cilla is a term for a granary or a cellar, a place where grains or other provisions are kept, especially in a monastery or another religious institution. Almacén is a term for a warehouse or a storeroom, a place or a space where goods are stored within the supply chain or a room dedicated to storage.

Dormitorio / Cuarto / Habitación / Recámara / Pieza / Alcoba

Dormitorio | Bedroom
Dormitorio | Bedroom
Dormitorio | Bedroom
Dormitorio | Bedroom
Dormitorio | Bedroom
Dormitorio | Bedroom

A dormitorio is the most common and general term for a bedroom, a room where people sleep, usually with a bed and other furniture. Many houses in Spain have at least two dormitorios: a main one for the adults and one or more for the children or guests. Some spaces that may be connected to the dormitorio are a closet or a wardrobe, a bathroom, a vanity, a toilet, and a W.C. The types of dormitorio are single, double, master, and child’s. Cuarto is a term for bedroom, but it can also mean room, quarter, or fourth. It is used in Venezuela, Peru, Uruguay, Argentina, and Mexico. Habitación is a term for bedroom, but it can also mean room or accommodation. It is used in Spain and other countries. Recámara is a term for bedroom, but it can also mean chamber or cartridge. It is used mainly in Mexico. Pieza is a term for bedroom, but it can also mean piece, part, or coin. It is used in Chile and Argentina. Alcoba is a term for bedroom, but it can also mean alcove or bower. It is used in Colombia and other countries, but it may sound old-fashioned or poetic .

Escaleras / Ecalinata / Grada / Gradería / Escala / Escalerilla / Peldaño

Escaleras | Staircase
Escaleras | Staircase
Escaleras | Staircase
Escaleras | Staircase
Escaleras | Staircase
Escaleras | Staircase

Escaleras is a construction that connects two different heights with steps or stairs. It can be made of different materials, such as wood, metal, stone, or concrete. Escaleras can have one or more sections separated by landings, plateaus, or rests. Another word for escaleras is escalinata, which usually refers to a staircase or stairway, a set of steps that connects two different levels, usually outside a building or in a large hall. Grada is a term for a step or a stair, a single unit of a staircase or a stairway. It can also refer to a tier or a row of seats in a stadium or an auditorium. Gradería is a term for a stand or a grandstand, a structure with rows of seats for spectators, usually in a sports venue or an open-air theater. Escala is a term for a scale or a ladder, a device that consists of two vertical bars connected by horizontal rungs, used for climbing up or down. It can also refer to a system of measurement or a proportion. Escalerilla is a term for a ladder or a stepladder, a portable device that consists of two hinged vertical bars connected by horizontal rungs, used for reaching high places. It can also refer to a small staircase or stairway. Peldaño is a term for a step or a rung, the part of a staircase, stairway, or ladder where the foot is placed. It can also refer to the distance between two steps or rungs.

Garaje / Cochera / Perking /Estacionamiento / Aparcamiento / Taller

Garaje | Garage
Garaje | Garage
Aparcamientos | Parking lots
Aparcamientos | Parking lots
Garaje | Garage
Garaje | Garage

Garaje is a garage, a place where cars are stored or repaired. It can be part of a house or a building, or it can be separate. Cochera is a term for a garage or a carport, a covered space for parking a car, usually attached to a house or a building. Estacionamiento is a term for a parking lot or a car park, an open space for parking cars, usually in a public or commercial area. Parking is a term for a parking lot or a car park, an open or covered space for parking cars, usually in a public or commercial area. It is borrowed from English and may sound foreign or informal. Aparcamiento is a term for a parking lot or a car park, an open or covered space for parking cars, usually in a public or commercial area. Taller is a term for a garage or a workshop, a place where cars are repaired or serviced. It can also refer to any place where manual or artistic work is done.

Gimnasio

Gimnasio | Gym
Gimnasio | Gym
Gimnasio | Gym
Gimnasio | Gym
Gimnasio | Gym
Gimnasio | Gym

Gimnasio is a generic term for a gym, a place that allows you to practice sports or exercise in an enclosed or delimited space with several machines and sporting goods available to those who visit it. In Spain, besides private and personal gyms, there are residential gyms that are shared between the owners of the same building. These places can also be called recintos, pabellones, campos or estadios depending on their size, location and features.

Jardín / Parterre / Parque / Vergel / Floresta / Eden / Oasis / Huerto / Rosaledas

Jardín | Garden
Jardín | Garden
Jardín | Garden
Jardín | Garden
Jardín | Garden
Jardín | Garden

Jardín is an area of ​​land where plants are grown, sometimes with other elements like fountains or sculptures, for sensory pleasure. In Castilian, it used to be called huerto de flor (flower garden) to distinguish it from huerto (vegetable garden). In Spain, there are private and personal jardines, as well as residential ones shared by building owners. These places can also be called parterres, parques, vergeles, florestas, edenes, oasis, huertos or rosaledas depending on their size, location and features. Parterre is a formal garden with flower beds arranged in symmetrical patterns, usually surrounded by gravel paths or low hedges. It can also refer to the part of a theater or opera house where the audience sits on the ground floor. Parque is a park or a large public green space, usually with trees, grass, benches, playgrounds, etc. It can also refer to an amusement park, a national park, a parking lot, etc. Vergel is an orchard or a garden with fruit trees, usually in a rural or natural setting. It can also refer to a place that is very fertile, productive or pleasant. Floresta means a grove or a small forest, usually with dense vegetation and shade. It can also refer to a literary genre that consists of pastoral poems or stories set in idyllic landscapes. Edén means Eden or paradise, usually referring to the biblical garden where Adam and Eve lived before the Fall. It can also refer to any place that is extremely beautiful, peaceful or blissful. Oasis means an oasis or a fertile spot in a desert where water and vegetation are found. It can also refer to any place that offers relief, comfort or refuge in a difficult or hostile situation. Huerto means a vegetable garden or a plot of land where vegetables, herbs or flowers are grown. It can also refer to an orchard or a garden with fruit trees. Rosaleda means a rose garden or a place where roses are cultivated or displayed. It can also refer to a variety of rose.

Merendero / Cenador / Pérgola / Emparrado / Armazón / Galería / Corredor / Quiosco

Merendero | Picnic area
Merendero | Picnic area
Merendero | Picnic area
Merendero | Picnic area
Merendero | Picnic area
Merendero | Picnic area

Merendero is a place where you can sit and eat, have lunch, or snack. It comes from merendar, meaning “to have an afternoon snack” or “to quickly defeat someone.” It often refers to tables with benches in an A-frame structure, indoors or outdoors. In the past, merenderos were near religious places for pilgrims. Today, most houses have rest areas on a terrace or in the garden. Cenador is a gazebo, round and fenced, usually covered with plants. Pérgola is an outdoor feature with vertical posts and cross-beams that support vines or lattice. Emparrado is a trellis or a structure that supports vines or climbing plants, usually forming a shaded walkway or sitting area. It can also refer to a vineyard or a place where grapes are grown. Armazón is a frame or a structure that supports something else, usually made of wood, metal or other materials. It can also refer to a skeleton, a carcass, a framework, etc. Galería is a gallery or a long and narrow room or passage, usually with windows or openings on one or both sides. It can also refer to an art gallery, a balcony, a tunnel, etc. Corredor is a corridor or a long and narrow passage that connects different rooms or parts of a building. It can also refer to a runner, a broker, a hallway, etc. Quiosco is a kiosk or a small open-fronted hut or cubicle from which newspapers, refreshments, tickets, etc., are sold. It can also refer to a bandstand, a pavilion, a newsstand, etc.

Oficina / Estudio / Despacho

Despacho | Office, Study
Despacho | Office, Study
Despacho | Office, Study
Despacho | Office, Study
Despacho | Office, Study
Despacho | Office, Study

Oficina or despacho is also called estudio —a home office or a room for study or work. There are different types of oficina such as open (without walls), closed (with walls), modern (with new technology), integrated (with other spaces), with furniture (with desks and chairs) and equipment (with computers and printers). Despacho means an office or a room where someone works or conducts business. It can also refer to a dispatch, a shipment, a delivery, etc. Estudio means a study or the act of studying or learning something. It can also refer to an office, a studio, an apartment, etc.

Pasillo / Corredor / Pasadizo / Callejón / Pasaje / Túnel / Corredor / Galería / Vestíbulo

Pasillo | Hallway
Pasillo | Hallway
Pasillo | Hallway
Pasillo | Hallway
Vestidor | Dressing room
Vestidor | Dressing room

Pasillo is a hallway, a room for connecting different spaces. It is usually at the front entrance of a house. Some houses do not have an entrance hall. There are different types of pasillos such as pasadizo (a passageway or a narrow and dark alley or street), callejón (between buildings), pasaje (a narrow way allowing access between buildings or to different rooms within a building, a passageway), túnel (an underground passage), corredor (a corridor or a long and narrow passage that connects different rooms or parts of a building), galería (a gallery or a long and narrow room or passage, usually with windows or openings on one or both sides), and vestíbulo (a vestibule or an entrance hall or lobby in a building).

Patio

Patio | Courtyard
Patio | Courtyard
Patio | Courtyard
Patio | Courtyard
Patio | Courtyard
Patio | Courtyard

Patio is a courtyard, an unroofed area located inside a building. It can be considered a common space in the popular architecture of the entire Mediterranean basin. The patio can be surrounded by walls that separate it from other neighboring patios or the public highway, or completely surrounded by the rest of the pieces of the same building. In any case, it will be an area without a roof, optionally covered with porches, interior galleries with columns, beams or arches to support the structure of the shed.

Piscina

Piscina | Swimming pool
Piscina | Swimming pool
Piscina | Swimming pool
Piscina | Swimming pool
Piscina | Swimming pool
Piscina | Swimming pool

Piscina is a swimming pool, swimming bath, wading pool, paddling pool, or simply pool — a structure designed to hold water to enable swimming or other leisure activities. Pools can be built into the ground (in-ground pools) or built above ground (as a freestanding construction or as part of a building or other larger structure), and may be found as a feature aboard ocean-liners and cruise ships.

Porche / Pórtico / Vestíbulo

Porche | Porch
Porche | Porch
Porche | Porch
Porche | Porch
Porche | Porch
Porche | Porch

Porche / pórtico is a porch or a hall, that architectural space that is open to the side and closed at the top, attached to a building. They are located next to the main core of the building, as opposed to a porch that is included inside (below) the building. They can be anterior, located immediately before the hall, and also posterior or lateral, as a stay area attached to the interior rest rooms. Porches are commonly used in homes, however it is also common to see them in public, private and government buildings.

Salón / Sala de estar / Estancia

Salón | Living room
Salón | Living room
Salón | Living room
Salón | Living room
Salón | Living room
Salón | Living room

Salón or sala de estar is a spacious room designed to be the center of social life in a home as well as to receive visitors. In English, it is called living room, drawing room or lounge. The living room usually has a group of armchairs or triplets with one or more tables in front of them placed on a carpet. It is common to also have other auxiliary furniture on the sides or next to the walls, plants, ornaments, bookcases, and different electronic entertainment devices. Recently, given the smaller size of the houses, the living room has also become a dining room so we’ll hear of salón-comedor. Some living rooms are converted to game rooms — sala de juego. You will hear estancia as a living room from people from Latin America.

Sótano / Subsuelo / Subterráneo

Sótano | Basement
Sótano | Basement
Sótano | Basement
Sótano | Basement
Sótano | Basement
Sótano | Basement

Sótano is the basement and can be totally or partially under the ground floor, with or without windows. Sotanos can be used for utility space where items such as boiler, water heater, air-conditioning system, breaker panel or fuse box are stored, storage exercise, different businesses that may also be located in lofts, parking lots and households. Much more rarely those are used as pubs or cellars since the cava (see above) is destined to this type of use. You will hear subsuelo and subterráneo from people from Latin America that live in Spain.

Terraza / Terrado

Terraza | Terrace
Terraza | Terrace
Sótano | Basement
Sótano | Basement
Sótano | Basement
Sótano | Basement

Terraza is a terrace — the area of the open-air house, the habitable exterior extension of a house above ground level, provided with railings or low walls. It is also the usable flat roof of a building —the rooftop—, which in some areas of southern Spain is called terrado and in the Alpujarras and the province of Almería and the Region of Murcia terrao.

Vestidor

Vestidor | Dressing room
Vestidor | Dressing room
Vestidor | Dressing room
Vestidor | Dressing room
Vestidor | Dressing room
Vestidor | Dressing room

Vestidor or vestière is the dressing room outside the bedroom, or the toilet, where the clothes are kept in an orderly way and available to be used. It is a room used to change clothes. One of the advantages of the dressing room, due to its independence, is to allow changing without disturbing the people in the adjoining bedroom. On the contrary, its main drawback is the need for additional space in the home.

Disclaimer: images are outsourced from free repositories and Idealista and belong to their respective owners.
Purpose of use: educational.