ArchDaily | Broadcasting Architecture Worldwidethe world's most visited architecture website

Sign up now and start saving and organizing your favorite architecture projects and photos


Find the most inspiring products for your projects in our Product Catalog.


Get the ArchDaily Chrome Extension and be inspired with every new tab. Install here »

  1. ArchDaily
  2. Projects
  3. Houses
  4. United States
  5. Kanner Architects
  6. 2007
  7. Oakland House / Kanner Architects

Oakland House / Kanner Architects

  • 01:00 - 21 September, 2009
Oakland House / Kanner Architects
Oakland House / Kanner Architects

Oakland House / Kanner Architects Oakland House / Kanner Architects Oakland House / Kanner Architects Oakland House / Kanner Architects +30

  • Architects

  • Location

    Oakland, CA, United States
  • Architects

    Kanner Architects
  • Client

    Craig and Terri Rubenstein
  • Budget

    $2.5 million
  • Area

    394.0 sqm
  • Project Year


From the architect. Located in Oakland, California, on a down-sloping site high above the San Francisco Bay, this home was designed to capture the magnificent vistas spanning from the Bay Bridge to the Golden Gate Bridge. Floor-to-ceiling glass clears the way to unobstructed views. The predominantly south-southwest orientation required deep overhangs to cut down glare and soften the light quality in the home.

The clients, a couple with grown children, wanted to create a dream home for their life as empty nesters, but still desired accommodations for their kids and other frequent guests. Thus, the four-bedroom home was planned as two distinct volumes connected by a glass bridge.

The primary volume is all about the owners who sought luxury and transparency. The master suite is a spacious open area with a wall of glass connecting the residents with their setting and capturing the breathtaking bay. The tub and shower are open to the bedroom and separated from the outside only by glass. Also in this main structure are the open plan of living room and kitchen.

The secondary volume, the street-facing building, comprises less critical functions: a glass carport, three guest rooms and a recreation room.

Spare and rigorously Modern in its aesthetic, the home has only a handful of materials and even fewer colors. Concrete floors, steel and glass window systems, and a mostly white composition of cabinetry and furnishings define the minimalist composition. Color is introduced subtly through blue plaster, landscaping, artwork and the dramatic views. The plaster, a meticulously trowelled herring bone scratch coat, has the illusory effect of a shimmering metal finish.

The building’s bowed walls – an hourglass in plan - are a response to the client’s desire for curvilinear forms as well as a strategy to satisfy municipal setback regulations. Rather than require that the entire building be set back a certain distance from property lines, city planners allowed the clients to average the home’s setback distance. The curves also serve to create a visual compression, which has the effect of a volume being squeezed in the center and exploding to the view on the glazed façade.

Cite: "Oakland House / Kanner Architects" 21 Sep 2009. ArchDaily. Accessed . <>
Read comments


Eric simiyu · October 30, 2013

This architect think outside the ussual box and give us a unique oe. the flare in desin opens new opportunitie for advancement

Aman Playboy · March 05, 2012

Oakland House / Kanner Architects | ArchDaily via @archdaily

Lancko Doors · November 13, 2011

Oakland House / Kanner Architects Modern Homes Modern Doors via @archdaily

Architectural photographer · June 15, 2011

Good architectural works and nice photo shot, thanks for sharing.

REHA GERÇEK · June 29, 2010

Oakland House / Kanner Architects | ArchDaily:

gigi · September 24, 2009

it's got some very nice lines overall-- the uncluttered simplicity... the bowed walls are a pretty cool dual-duty idea. The texture of the exterior walls are unusual & definitely defines the structure, but it's lacking *some*thing... glad the owners are happy tho...

oscar falcón lara · September 23, 2009

Well the construction seems to be on par with the budget expressed here, it has all the perks of a cool light dwelling and if they built it then the client must have been satisfied with the result, otherwise why bother?, the architect did a great job in getting a design from thought to built so congrats on that. Besides that,I don't agree with many comments above me and I think it is a good project, some seem to forget that if it is a home not built for them than all criticism will fall on deaf ears, surely there are debatable aspects to any project, but what is more important is the fact that the client ended up with a project built for his specific needs, the family that lives there must be thrilled, hoping they feel the same 10 years from now, maybe they like it even more who knows.

cad · September 22, 2009

They curve wall looks like they're getting ready for tiles. Tim Griffith. I don't know about meticulous, should have used a finer trowel and shorter scratches for a metallic look. Tim Griffith

frank · September 22, 2009

I think this is a nice project, it srikes a great balance between minimal and mannered. I especially like the angled fascias - a suble nod to Lloyd Wright's mid-century houses.

jimmy · October 01, 2009 10:44 PM

whatever, amateur...

alejandro · September 22, 2009

I find it a prime example of what architecture form the States looks and feels like.
It’s in-between to put it in simple terms.
You can´t say it’s really contemporary, or minimalistic, or transparent or sculptural or cold or to magazine oriented, etc. It´s just plain boring.

I.P Freely · September 22, 2009

I suppose it is a matter of aesthetics. I am not a student nor am I an architect. Therefore, aesthetically speaking I find the house to be ugly. That's my only argument--aesthetics.

Jeison · September 22, 2009

Beautiful. Love the transparence!

Architecture+Molding · September 22, 2009

Oakland House / Kanner Architects: © Tim Griffith Architects: Kanner Architects Location: Oakland, California, U..

nombre · September 22, 2009

stucked in the 70s - this is not the architecture which reflects the zeitgeist.

vladimir zotov · September 22, 2009

concrete texture on side wall is very interesting

archiyed · September 22, 2009

too much transparent

no_ro_ma · September 22, 2009

fery coot..

Gnomic · September 22, 2009

This project makes me sad for the missed opportunity - nice site, decent budget, client wants a great modern house - and for whatever reason, the architect can't pull it together.

alfred · September 25, 2009 12:35 PM

what would you have done?

harry · September 23, 2009 06:05 PM

You can't make everybody happy, but I think the design is well considered and I think the architect is very successful to accomplish the wishes of his clients.

Archlad · September 22, 2009 07:46 AM

Gnomic, what do you mean by saying “and for whatever reason”. Any arguments?

I think it’s great.


Comments are closed

Read comments

奥克兰住宅/ Kanner Architects