Mill Valley




Wanting a sunny play-yard for their children adjacent to a large redwood grove, these clients purchased and combined two adjacent lots and we sited the new structure across the back behind the trees, leaving a grand lawn area with space to gather sunlight for play. A new lodge, recalling the grandeur of classic Adirondack compounds, required three form elements to house family bedrooms and the guest-apartment-over-garage at either end of a classic lodge great room at the center.

The front door at the base of the stair tower invites entry between two large exterior functional lodge elements and connects to the kids bedrooms upstairs. It conceals a powder room and opens to a mysterious wine cellar through an interior window at the back of the space.

This great room offers a central fireplace element that holds the focus from peripheral design elements. The dominant being the indoor dining area on one side and the lounge on the opposite with the TV cleverly concealed above the two-sided fireplace element. On other sides we have the kitchen, wine tasting (with wine cellar tucked behind the stair), pool table, kids homework stations and a 20’ folding wall/door opening out onto the deck.

The shaded deck includes an outdoor kitchen, dining area, outdoor seating in front of an outdoor Rumford fireplace, and a panoramic view of the play yard and redwood grove with 71 second-growth trees.

The guest apartment sits above the garage which is accessed by a unique driveway that passes through the redwood grove. Concerned about weight and compaction of the delicate root systems of the trees, the driveway was designed as a bridge that spans over the roots without loading the soil.