Anticipating retirement, the owners purchased a high bank waterfront property overlooking spectacular views of Puget Sound and the snow capped Olympic Mountains to the west.
Specific requirements included: a living room, kitchen/family room and master bedroom, conceived as a series of discrete but linked spaces opening onto each other to accommodate their daily activities; a dining room for formal sit-down dinners; two guest suites; one, on the ground floor; the other suitable for a live-in caretaker; a hobby room to accommodate everything from crafting stained glass to a quilting table; and an oversized garage for working on a cherished antique car.
Floor space for their collection of 30 oriental rugs and exploiting the western views from this choice waterfront property were essential. Wide overhangs, covered porches (for protection from rain), a southern exposure for all major rooms and energy efficiency were additional requirements.
The one acre site slopes from 10% to 12% towards the west before dropping sixty five feet to Puget Sounds. Numerous trees dotted the side. Each was carefully inspected and evaluated for their impact on views and sun in their relationship to internal spaces. A few were removed, the others pruned and trimmed to frame views.
The staggered main floor plan allows all rooms a western view and southern sun. A long diagonal axis from the kitchen/family room to the living room links the ground floor spaces along the southwest side. This is paralleled on the east side with an axis from the entry door to the living room. The dining room is oriented perpendicular to these axis to ficus on Puget Sound through corner windows.
The living room opens through an oversized window commanding views of water and snow capped mountains to the west. The views and western sun are filtered by carefully pruned maple. To the east, the music center, with piano, sound equipment and built-in desk overlook the “morning garden.”
The fireplace, the primary source of heat for much of the year, provides a focal point for the main seating group and serves as a hinge between the living room and dining room. The diagonal wall provides views across the property an the neighbor’s lawn to a wide expanse of water to the southwest. The dining room and kitchen/family room also share this view through corner windows.
The master suite, positioned above the dining room, overlooks the living room, main stair and kitchen/family room. The fireplace flue chase provides a head board with built-ins. A vista across the stair opens to a view of the “morning garden,” and a half-oval clear story window introduces morning light to the space. The bedroom also shares a north facing operable skylight with the living room below.
South and west windows, french doors, skylights, glass block and clear story windows flood the kitchen/family room with light throughout the day. A covered porch with five skylights extends to the south off the kitchen/family room, framing western views from the guest bedroom. The southwest facing french doors off the living room are protected with a large overhang and custom skylight. A covered porch protects the entry. The hobby room is protected by the projection of the living room bay above and opens to grade through a pair of french doors. South windows and a skylight light the master bath. The upstairs guest bedroom opens to the south for sun and to the west for magnificent views.