• Tucked between the family room and the boat dock, the outdoor sitting area has clear views of the lagoon. Foliage and a stone wall provide shelter from the elements, and a steel gate leads to a handy outdoor shower for rinsing off after a swim.

    Credit: Mark Schwartz

    Tucked between the family room and the boat dock, the outdoor sitting area has clear views of the lagoon. Foliage and a stone wall provide shelter from the elements, and a steel gate leads to a handy outdoor shower for rinsing off after a swim.
sutton suzuki architects, mill valley, calif.

This sunny little sitting area snuggles up to a handsome stone wall, which demarcates indoor and outdoor and public and private spaces of a renovated waterfront home. "The linear stone wall runs through the property and the house, ranging in height from 8 to 11 feet," says architect Ron Sutton, "and since the project was a remodel, we built the wall from the outside in."

Sutton speced clean cut stones, dry-stacked to conceal mortar joints. The technique gives the outdoor alcove a more polished, roomlike feel. The nook blocks stiff breezes and affords clear views of the lagoon--handy for keeping an eye on the kids when they're in the water. A light steel grid covers the space and will eventually fill in with an aromatic jasmine awning. "This space is delightful--it would be a great place to sit and read a book," the jury observed.

project architect: Ron Sutton, Sutton Suzuki Architects
general contractor: Irelan, Robinson & Hadley, Belvedere
landscape architect: Don Wihlborg, Don Wihlborg Landscaping, Corte Madera, Calif.
interior designer: Cynthia Wright, C. Wright Design, Mill Valley
stonemason: Mike Petty, Novato, Calif.
project size: 5,000 square feet
site size: 0.23 acre
construction cost: Withheld
photographer: Mark Schwartz

  • floor plan

    Credit: Sutton Suzuki Architects

    floor plan