— How would you describe this vacation home in a few words?
— Saddle Peak House
— What was your inspiration to create Saddle Peak House and offer it as a luxury vacation rental?
The idea of the vacation rental has been growing in my practice for a number of years. This project has become a way of communicating architecture’s role in enhancing the experience of the things we value to a larger audience. To create something like this, and then have the opportunity to interact with a diverse set of travellers about the experience, can be extremely rewarding.”
— Saddle Peak Pool
— Please tell us a bit more about the architecture and the house.
The house is quite modest in terms of interior square footage but the sweeping experience of the mountains and the sea is almost overwhelming. The house blurs the boundaries between inside and out with giant sliding doors opening onto three decks and allowing the mountain breezes to pass through. One side of the house looks over the Pacific Ocean, feeling very much like a bird’s eye view, while the other is earthbound and intimate, taking in the massive rock outcropping reflected, together with the sky above, in the pure geometry of the infinity-edge pool.
The house and studio are detailed with the same materials and share an alignment across the long site, suggesting an expansive horizontal domain and encompassing the entirety of the mountain range.”
— Saddle Peak House at dawn
— How would you describe the atmosphere inside Saddle Peak House?
The interplay of concrete, wood, steel and glass, creates a surprisingly intimate environment. Furnishings culled from all over the world, and selected based on their appropriateness for each unique space in the house, reinforce a sense of design integrity and create a harmonious whole. I think the design avoids false notes. It’s a calm and reassuring feeling when things are well resolved and interconnected.”
— View from the studio living area
— Please tell us a bit about the rooms and facilities of the vacation home.
As the natural contours fall away, we capture a beautiful space for the master suite – with a king size bed, bathroom, writing desk and walk in closet – and the only earthbound room in the entire project. When you open the master suite's large sliding door, you are on grade with sweeping views of the Pacific and, to the south, the floating structure of the living room as it hovers above the landscape.
The studio includes a bedroom, living room, kitchenette and bathroom. The living room’s convertible sofa allows the studio to function as an autonomous house for a second family.”
— Living area
— To you personally, what’s so special about staying at Saddle Peak House?
There’s a sense of going back in time to experience California as very few people have. It’s a wild place and so quiet that you actually hear the bees and hummingbirds. The native plants on the property are found throughout the surrounding Santa Monica Mountains, connecting you to that broader context.
This mountain range set against the sea presents the beauty of California at its most iconic. It’s a rare and timeless thing to dwell in such a place and, for me, there’s nothing more restorative.”