Form + Function

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Credit: Benny Chan / Fotoworks

The furniture-like kitchen cabinets were locally made by R&B Custom Cabinets, in Santa Rosa, from ¾-inch white oak that was stained or painted.

With just a few upper cabinets in the space, storage is in drawers and in the pantry located on the back side of the room. The single column and confluence of beams needed for structural stability serve to also make a subtle reference to room borders.

Gimbals offer simple, cost-effective, and discreet light. Above the island, a slot carved into the existing joists is painted black and filled with gimbal track lights to provide unique task lighting.


Rooms With a View

This 1940s house had been renovated several times, which resulted in a mishmash of styles. The homeowners had lived in the house for eight years and considered moving, but liked their existing location. They approached Griffin Enright Architects, in Los Angeles, for an open, modern renovation. The designers replaced the two existing bay windows with glass-front cubes encased in concrete board.

This 1940s house had been renovated several times, which resulted in a mishmash of styles. The homeowners had lived in the house for eight years and considered moving, but liked their existing location. They approached Griffin Enright Architects, in Los Angeles, for an open, modern renovation. The designers replaced the two existing bay windows with glass-front cubes encased in concrete board.

Credit: Benny Chan / Fotoworks

Room-size window boxes, which replaced the smaller original bay windows, cantilever over the inner courtyard. The right-hand box contains the new master bathroom, the box on the left, the master bedroom.

The designers paid close attention to the view. “The sandblasted windows regulate the view from the inside as well as from the outside,” Griffin says. From the inside, the clients can’t see the neighbor’s homes, only the city beyond. And the bathroom mirror was placed so that a viewer looking into it floats in the reflection of the city of Hollywood.

“The windows do have a voyeuristic quality,” Griffin admits. But while the tub’s placement 9 inches from the window might not fit most client’s needs, unless a person inside is standing right up next to the glass, “or is bathing at night with every light on, could a passerby make out your form,” Griffin says. For additional privacy, the bathroom window has been sandblasted to the height of one of the owners.

A greater concern, Griffin’ says, was the internal look of the doorless bathroom. “A lot of people are doing open bathrooms as a way to make both [the master bedroom and bathroom] feel bigger,” she says. The designers placed the toilet in a separate space beyond the vanity. From the bedroom, one can see only the curved bath, “a beautiful Philippe Starck tub.”

The original sloped ceiling remains in the bathroom and bedroom, but that original roofline used to cut off the view, Griffin says. “Now [with the large panes of glass in the window boxes] the view to the city has more sky in it.”


Stare Way

  • The rear stairs wrap around to the private areas of the house. Steel rungs lead to a skylight that brings additional light to the back of the house and provides access to the rooftop.

    Credit: Benny Chan / Fotoworks

    The rear stairs wrap around to the private areas of the house. Steel rungs lead to a skylight that brings additional light to the back of the house and provides access to the rooftop.

The view from the relocated stairs shows the extended sight lines that make the home feel more expansive. The stairs also create a new connection to the library, backyard, three bedrooms, and the roof via a “submarine ladder.”

Made of bent steel embedded in the wall, the ladder leads to a small redwood deck. The roof itself, Lopez says, is “a regular asphalt roof that’s torched down.” Rooftop visitors have an unparalleled view of Hollywood.

—Stacey Freed, senior editor,REMODELING.