Contractor: ESMB, Inc.
Landscape: Jonathan Morley of the Berger Partnership
Architectural Metals: Company K + Decorative Metal Arts
Furnishings: Inform Interiors
Photographer: Aaron Leitz
Text description provided by the architects. Tucked into a small city lot along the water’s edge, the house was designed to live like a studio loft for a bachelor who values privacy, a central location to reside in the city, and a convenient spot to park the floatplane. Hidden from the street, the building is a protective shell of zinc and aluminum – a refined version of the maritime industrial sheds found throughout the waterfronts of Seattle.
Water-side, the house becomes more transparent, with prospect-views over the houseboats of Portage Bay, the University of Washington, and the Cascade Mountains. Living, cooking, and sleeping all occur in one volume distributed over two-floor levels, sized and shaped to envelop the occupant in a protective refuge.
The kitchen is small and streamlined with equipment paired down to the essentials. Bathing happens in a below-grade spa or a master bath with a Japanese style hinoki tub overlooking the lake.
An interior palette of cedar, walnut, flagstone, blackened steel, and marble stands in contrast to the machine-like character of the exterior. Site constraints, and the modest needs of a bachelor, generated a one-bedroom residence smaller in size and lower in height than the house it replaced.