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Located in a wooded area of Orinda the owners purchased a 3,260 square foot ranch-style home built in the 1950’s thinking to remodel and add on to it for their family to fit their needs into the future. At almost an acre, the property was good sized but showing age with an kidney-shaped pool that needed replacing in a level circular rear yard. Wanting a master plan for a phased design and construction project to be completed as budgets allow, the initial step was the main house redesign followed by the backyard with new pool, then the front yard with new semi-circular drop-off area. Taking their time now several years from start to finish of the three phases, they now have their family home completed.

The final residence is now 3,600 square feet in size with four bedrooms and three baths plus an additional bedroom or home office. Opening the main living area by removing walls and increasing the sense of space by vaulting the ceiling created a great room for family activities. Different tones of wood give warmth to the spaces and an entry screening cabinet gives definition to the front entry. A massive existing fireplace was maintained but clad in limestone and it’s facia edge-lit with a new skylight. A dark metal fireplace surround provides contrast in color and materiality that joins many different materials together. The fireplace is the focal point of the room.

The galley kitchen is a long room starting with wine and beverage coolers on one end terminating in a family room at the other. In-between is a custom stainless steel exhaust hood over an induction burner array that includes a large induction wok hob. A commercial restaurant equipment firm fabricated the flush fitting hood.

The next phase of design and work was the backyard with new swimming pool and landscape and hardscaping designed by Huettl Landscape Architecture. Custom concrete pavers and wood desk lead to a winding path climbing up the hill at the rear of their property..

The last phase is the front yard also designed by Huettl with a car drop off driveway and new stairs up to the home wrapping around a new outdoor seating area. Every part of the property is used for different functions and levels of activity.

The team of the homeowners, architects, landscape designers and general contractor stayed together throughout the project maintaining a continuity of vision, aesthetics and quality. This also created a working relationship that helped maintain the owner budget moving through the phases of design and construction. Buestad Construction was a steady hand from start to finish performing all construction for the home and grounds.