Built in 1951, this home’s distinctive architectural detailing reflects the aesthetic environment of the Bay Area. Nestled up a private drive on the ridge of the Berkeley Hills, this lovely home is situated on an oversized lot with a wide view of the Bay.
However, the original layout of house could not make the best use of the magnificent view, and the indoor/outdoor connections were minimal. Despite good potential for light and ventilation, vast areas of the lower floor were used only as storage, workshop, and garage; and the entrance to the house served the upper level, with no direct access to the lower level.
The design challenge was to come up with a scheme which had minimum impact on the structure of the house and to stay within the existing building envelope as much as possible. Our design goal was to: modify the main entrance, open the building to the magnificent view of the Bay, enhance the indoor/outdoor relation, improve circulation to accommodate contemporary needs, and Connect the lower floor to the upper floor and use it as additional living space.
With the new design, the living area of the house has increased from 3,237 sq. ft. to approximately 4700 sq. ft. The front entrance is at the lower level and opens into a dramatic atrium at intermediate landing, down a few stairs into the lower floor and up to the main floor. In addition, our design created an excellent indoor/outdoor living, with decks, patios and an extensive garden. The new lower level includes an attached two-car garage, a workshop, two bedrooms, a bathroom and a large entertainment room with a kitchenette. The main level with a flexible floor plan offers 3 bedrooms and 3 bathrooms, a large living room, family room, dining room and a generously sized kitchen.