LocationCarmel-by-the-Sea, United States
Design TeamGreg Mottola, Joshua Keller, Michael Waltner, Brian Padgett
Text description provided by the architects. The first of several buildings intended for a rugged and pristine site in the Santa Lucia Preserve, the Halls Ridge Knoll guesthouse is a thoughtful modernist intervention, carefully detailed in stone, timber and glass. The master plan for this vacation retreat calls for a guesthouse, workshop and main residence. Each will be anchored to the land with a series of massive stone walls and fireplace chimneys, marking the passage along the ridge and culminating in a stone court at the future main residence.
Designed to choreograph movement along the extraordinary ridge-top site, the guesthouse celebrates its magical surroundings. The Santa Lucia Preserve is a remarkably beautiful, vast landscape that was previously a historic cattle ranch. The site has a rolling topography, a forest of ancient live oaks and manzanita, and offers panoramic views of the San Clemente Mountains and Los Padres National Forest beyond.
The first building constructed on site is the guesthouse. A simple, uncomplicated building, it flanks the winding entry drive and is anchored to the sloping site with a massive stone wall, screening the house and pool. A timber-framed shed roof springs from the wall, supporting naturally weathered zinc roofing over cedar-clad volumes.
The guesthouse is sited to take advantage of the temperate California climate. Expansive windows provide natural lighting throughout the house, while a broad overhang shades the interiors from the summer sun. Sliding doors and operable hopper windows throughout the house use the prevailing winds for natural ventilation, while also providing expansive views of the mountain range. Wood flooring in the living space of the house is reclaimed from an old barn.