Designed for a San Francisco couple and their six children with ages ranging from high school to college, the project is located on a 20-acre site with ocean and mountain views, about five miles inland from the Pacific Ocean. The family desired a setting that would be casual and rustic as well as incorporate sustainable features to minimize the house’s carbon footprint. Diverse activities were part of the design program, including: partying, cooking, tanning, swimming, archery, horseshoes, gardening, and wood-splitting.
Design concept and solution: The project has two primary buildings plus accessory buildings and recreational components that were designed to work together as a country compound. The 2,800-square-foot main house is composed of a “live building” and a “sleep building,” which overlap at their roofs to create a linkage and sheltered outdoor space. The sleep building is slid under the higher roof of the live building. The live building contains the dining, living, and kitchen areas, plus a master suite upstairs. The central kitchen anchors the main space, which is flanked by dining and living areas. The kitchen island has an 18-foot-long, 3-inch-thick single walnut slab countertop that has many edges and was cut from a large fallen tree. Two, triple sets of 8-by-10-foot sliding glass doors open this main living space to the yard and the views, creating a panoramic, 32-foot-wide clear opening when fully deployed. The smaller building, with two bedrooms and a shared bathhouse, angles out to form an L-shaped yard. Reclaimed barn wood and Corten rusted steel roofing covers the exterior of the buildings. The interior is a composition of concrete floors, wood, stone, and steel.