Our client, who is from the sports world, wanted an open-plan house for entertaining but also a photography studio and a gallery space suitable for hanging his large art projects. Working with Barry Chase of CMF Homebuilders and Linda Dahan of Highfire Interior Design, the project began with an empty hilltop lot but required a 10-foot high retaining wall to create a sturdy level pad for building.
A spiral driveway leads to the property and car park, where wide horizontal pavers guide the eye to the house. Water surrounds the entrance, flowing between the steps, and a rough textured stacked-stone wall. The large center-pivot front door opens to reveal the dramatic foyer, capped by a double-height box, 20’x 20’, accented with ribbon windows to the north and south, and skylights overhead. Look straight ahead out beyond the patio, for a perfectly framed view of the California hills.
Large earth toned porcelain tiles flow smoothly down three steps and into the living area, which is lined with a series of wall-sized glass pocket doors. When all are open the feeling of bringing the outside, inside, breezily expresses the west coast lifestyle. To the left is the kitchen, open to the family room, which at its far end, is built out over the hillside and surrounded on three sides by glass, creating an exhilarating panorama and a floating effect.