The house is located in Innis Arden, a residential area on the outskirts of the city of Seattle, which is characterized by uninterrupted views of the Olympic Mountains - a mountain range on the Olympic Peninsula in the state of Washington, USA - and the Puget Sound - a saltwater estuary that connects to the Pacific Ocean. The Innis Arden neighborhood has a particular set of regulations that restricts the size and height of new projects or renovations within the neighborhood boundaries to ensure views of the Puget Sound and mountains are preserved for its residents. The regulation requires that each project go through a rigorous approval process before obtaining its construction license.
The property where the house is located is a sloping lot, and the 650m2 project is made up of two levels. The design concept answers to three main guidelines: prioritizing Puget Sound and mountain views for our clients; ensuring that the design meets the requirements of the internal regulations while preserving - for the neighbors - the existing visual corridors, and building an energy-efficient house.
From the main street, the house is placed on the site in a discreet manner, with a low-slope gabled roof, and in a certain way 'submerged' in the terrain, complying with the maximum height prescribed by the internal regulations of the neighborhood. A bridge gives access to the main entrance of the house across a sunken patio. In the Great Room, large windows with floor-to-ceiling sliding doors are used, which allows the entry of abundant natural light. The covered terrace of the main room cantilevers over the garden to frame the view of the sea and the afternoon sun, which hides behind the mountains.
Taking advantage of the topography of the lot, a lower level floor is created where the children's rooms are located. A family room, and other spaces such as the office, the gym, a study and the mechanical and laundry rooms are also in this level. The ground level - anchored against the hill through a retaining wall, creates the sunken patio that allows in natural light.