Bristol Circle Residence

Bristol Circle Residence

Architect
Studio William Hefner
Location
California, United States
Category
Private Houses
Laura Hull

Bristol Circle House

Studio William Hefner as Architects

In my initial conversation with the owners of this Brentwood Park residence, they asked for something French, which I presumed meant a southern California variant of the Petit Trianon; but much to my surprise, it turned out they were great aficionados of Art Deco, and French, to them, meant the racy yet simple lines and elegant proportions of late 19th-and early 20th- century Gallic architecture. Accordingly, I conceived of the house as the simple chateau one might have built just outside Paris, during the Belle Epoque, the renovated in the 1930's--an impression established, upon arrival, by an abundance of French windows, an informal gravel drive, and the kind of tank fountain, surrounded by lavender, that might have quenched the thirst of a coachman's horse.


Within, Kazuko and I maintained a cool monochrome palette; what appears to be off-white is in fact very similar multiple pale shades of grey, oyster, celadon, and kid. Architectural details were edited to a minimum, so that what remains--antique doorknobs and light fixtures, custom steel doors, delicate wrought-iron rails, and shutters adapt from an old Parisian hotel, evoke the style and period with subtlety and discretion.


The rooms themselves are intimately scaled yet grandly proportioned, and rely upon the authority of the architecture rather than an excess of furnishings to achieve their effect. This is apparent immediately upon entering the living and dining rooms to the right and left: both feature tall doors with transoms that accentuate the 12-foot ceiling.

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