Lafayette Residence
Lafayette, California

A complete renovation of a 1950s ranch house in the San Francisco Bay Area transformed a crowded and dark house into a light and airy home. By opening exterior walls with large doors and windows, eliminating interior walls, and installing modern materials, a true sense of space and place was created for a family who relocated to the Bay Area from Brooklyn.

The public spaces (entry, living room, kitchen, dining room) and 4 bedrooms revolve around an open central core, which is composed of a 'pod', and a butler's pantry.

The pod is designed as two back-to-back benches, acting as a low, silent divider between entry, living room, and kitchen. The bench facing the entry is for public entrance activities such as shoe removal and bag drop, with cubbies below for shoes and backpacks, and drawers on either side for keys, gloves, etc. The attached mirror-image sofa is private, yet within the public area. Intended as an exposed hide-away reading area, it has storage below and an attached full height bookshelf.

The butler's pantry is integrated with the open circulation plan, adding considerable storage space to the kitchen, and includes a full-size wine refrigerator and coffee bar area.

Materials were chosen for simplicity of palette. The floor is resin, continuous throughout the entire house in the same buff color. The bathroom floors and textured shower floors are also resin, as are the shower walls, which have different color of resin.

Solar panels heat the swimming pool, radiant floor heat warms the house, and the gray water is recycled to the landscape irrigation.