Palo Alto Contemporary 2015
Featured in Home + Garden Design magazine, January 2018 This project converts a small mid century duplex into a contemporary single family home for a young couple. Challenge: The property is situated between two multi-family units on either side. Response: The design seeks to shield the sides of the house for privacy, so the floor plan focuses all the views to rear and front. A butterfly roof profile allows clerestory windows to bring light into the interiors, taking advantage of open sky and treetop views in the park bordering the property in the rear. The hallway along the side of the house, that leads from the living areas to the bedroom wing, is punctuated with windows that have obscure glass for privacy, yet allow light to play throughout the day. Challenge: Scale and proportion in the Great Room Response: Varying ceiling heights help identify zones - the dining area is under a flat ceiling while the Living room is under the sloped butterfly roof. Although the kitchen is open and part of the great room, the 'tower' anchors the island and defines the kitchen space. On the kitchen side it houses the microwave, coffemaker and other small appliances, leaving the counter uncluttered. It also helps create a visual screen to the great room for views from the front door. City Planning Codes required that the perimeter walls be left as is - but there were no restrictions on interior rearranging of walls and rooms, or on building a new roof. The great room faces the small back yard and sets the tone for their lifestyle – a modern kitchen anchors one end of the great room and a gas ribbon fireplace anchors the other end. Large multi-slide doors open up to the rear deck, with additional seating and outdoor fireplace. Uncluttered space and calming color tones complement the modern forms. Read more about the kitchen here: Construction: Chris Donatelli Builders Kitchen by European Cabinets & Design Studio, Palo Alto