Skip to main content

Feldman Architecture - House Ocho

Feldman Architecture

House Ocho

Treading lightly and designed for maximum solar gain, this house by Feldman Architecture blends into its oak grove setting. Hunkered into the hillside, the earth provides a warm embrace for the building while the separate living and sleeping wings forms a courtyard for cozy nights by the fire.

Atop a narrow ridge with old oak groves on either end, the site has steep meadows and commanding views in all directions.
According to Jonathan Feldman, the owners originally envisioned a meandering Spanish-style house. But such a scheme meant either tearing out a large number of the site’s beautiful oaks or placing the house in the middle of the ridge where it would dominate the site. Above all the clients had fallen in love with the land and wanted a house that would enhance, not detract from, the sites natural beauty. At the same time, they wanted a warm, light-filled house, with ample space to accommodate many guests at once.

Their solution: Positioning the house in the hillside below a cluster of stunning trees and dividing the program into a series of grass-covered “pavilions.” Sinking the house into the hillside diminished its visual impact and left the oak grove largely untouched. Pulling apart the building elements not only broke up the house’s overall massing, but enabled light to penetrate three sides of each element. Additionally, the spaces between the elements became usable outdoor rooms.

On top of each pavilion are native grasses and wildflowers, lessening the visual impact even more when viewed from above. Thermal mass from concrete floors and exposed retaining walls hold in the heat and special Low-E glass was specified that would provide maximum insulation without significantly cutting the important solar heat transmission. Sand-blasted form boards created concrete retaining walls with a soft silvery-wood like texture. The house also benefits form radiant heated floors throughout and to take things even further the insulation between rooms is denim from manufacturing waste and the wood flooring is from certified sources.

Built across a single level, the layout affords privacy to the bedrooms, isolated at each end of the build while still close enough to the main living area. The kitchen is given its rightful place as the center of the house and the dining area is set jutting out into the views, flanked by family and living rooms, providing two areas for entertaining.
Across in the far bedroom wing, the bathrooms are centered for economies in plumbing yet still en suite for both bedrooms. Like all rooms of the house (bar bathrooms), these bedrooms soak up the views down the valley.
Rounding out the rooms is a private study loft, up above the kitchen with access back to the rear garden.

Having a south east facing plot has allowed this house to maximize light, warmth and views in one design. And the courtyard fire, no doubt has heard many a story over long summer evenings.


Architect: Jonathan Feldman AIA, Feldman Architecture, LLP
Project team: Yat Sun Ng & Tom McElroy
Project: Vacation Home / “Family Compound”
Location: Santa Lucia Preserve, Carmel Valley, CA
Completed: September, 2004
House Size: 270 m2
Garage: 50 m2
Lot Size: 49 Acres, of which 47 Acres are protected by an environmental easement
Photos: Paul Dyer

via: Feldman Architecture, LLP


Scott Jenkins said…
Very nice house. I really enjoy the way it is built to be part of the hill and the exterior fireplace.
Paulo said…
Outstanding project.... beautiful location

Popular posts from this blog

Lund Hagem - Cabin Ameln

Lund Hagem, based out of Norway have a fantastic site, and collection of baches. Cabin Ameln, a providing sheltered BBQ retreat, and views out across the fjord. Contour hugging hunkered in design, connects with the site while minimalist layout and crisp finishes set it apart from your ordinary weekend retreat.
Location: Østerøya, Sandefjord, Norway
Size: 90 m2
Completed: 2009
The building sits in sloping terrain in close proximity to the sea. It has been designed to create favourable, screened outdoor areas. Previous buildings (4 in total) have been demolished and replaced with one new building that collects all functions under one roof.
The L-shaped layout uses steps to follow the terrain so that the building can utilise existing vegetation and trees to avoid visibility from the sea. This layout creates one upper and one lower outdoor area/patio. The upper patio has been duly
screened from the seafront, but offers views through the building due to glass walls.

I think I've found my Nor…

Portelet House - BAS MooArc

Guernsey Beach Villa - The Portlet House is one of many fantastic works on Guernsey by BAS MooArc - Minimalist style creating a welcoming beach retreat...more

Well after a huge hiatus, I though I would post this gem to rekindle the spirits as Christmas approaches. After a quick catch up on Facebook Jamie Falla kindly provided me with some floor plans to their Portelet House, overlooking Portelet Harbour - Guernsey.

Conceived as three timber blocks nestled into the hillside allowing views of the surrounding landscape from all principle rooms. The palette of materials blends with the beach setting and mediates between water, earth and sky.

With sea views out to the North - the house faces a battle between light and distractions. Rightly so, large full height glazing faces out to sea from both the living and dining room. These comprising two of three connected timber blocks. Angled skylights and clerestory windows ensure that the hallways and bedrooms are also doused in daylight.

The Dini…

Marcio Kogan - Laranjeiras House

Marcio Kogan
Laranjeiras House
Here's one of Marcio's latest houses built in the Laranjeiras condominium, just south of Parati on the border of São Paulo and Rio states. Once again ultra wide openings and indoor outdoor flow prevail, yet this time the ultra sleek minimalism has be softened through more wood, vernacular roof tiles, a peaked roof and multi coloured curtains (take a look, it all works so well).
Laranjeiras, the sleekest beach condominium (in the Brazilian sense referring to a gated community) has some of the best beaches in the area and its own marina. Marcio's Du Plessis house is also in the complex. In contrast to Marcio's houses in São Paulo city, the security of this complex, has allowed him to open up the house to the views, pool and beach beyond.

The house faces north as an L with the games room and pool on the seaward side of the house. Large decks are once again shaded by wide overhands. The bedrooms have east-west doors for cross ventilation, as do…