bohlin cywinski jackson, seattle, wash.

This is a lovely house, set low, and doesn't make a statement," a judge said. But it has plenty to say about the landscape. Delicately sited on the rocky spine of a wetland peninsula, its low profile slips into the shorter vegetation at the water's edge. Rocks outside the windows reach almost to the sills. And a canted roofline lets in views of cedars, pines, and sky.

Bohlin Cywinski Jackson devised a long, linear platform that treads lightly on the land. You enter the building on its north side though a wall of weathering steel. Once inside, the lakefront is revealed through a glass wall with sliding doors and a wood deck running the length of the house. The architects tucked the building behind a thicket for privacy from people on the lake, so the view looks down the water at an angle.

The floor plan places the private rooms on the house's perimeter: Two cedar boxes attached to the north side define the edges of the covered entryway. They hold bathrooms and utilities, while the bedrooms anchor opposite ends of the house. The judges praised the "meaningful layering of public and private spaces" and the project's "serene understatement."

principal in charge: Peter Q. Bohlin, FAIA, Bohlin Cywinski Jackson
project architect: Steve Mongillo, Bohlin Cywinski Jackson 
general contractor: Martel Construction, Bozeman, Mont.
landscape architect: Swift & Company, Seattle
interior designer: Bohlin Cywinski Jackson
project size: 2,200 square feet
site size: 10 acres
construction cost: Withheld
photographer: Nic Lehoux, except where noted