Glenhaven Residence

Glenhaven Residence

Private Houses
Pacific Palisades, Los Angeles, CA, USA - Build completed in 2014
Jim Bartsch

The Big Picture

Abramson Teiger Archiects as Architects

With a gallery-worthy view of the Santa Monica Bay, the Glenhaven Residence was designed to showcase the majesty of the outside world. Bright white interior spaces are punctuated with dark exterior materials to mimic a framed work of art, with nature and the bustling city below as the subject. The owners are empty-nesters who were ready for a downsized home that defined the more mature pace of their current lifestyle. No longer in need of massive spaces and countless rooms, the couple bought a classic and relatively small ranch-style house with a glamorous view of Los Angeles. 

The existing structure was stripped down to the studs, so it could be rebuilt with crisp lines and modern figurations. From the front entrance to the back patio, the structure acts as a portal that encourages views of the striking scenery from every room. Quite literally, one can see the ocean on the other side of the home all the way from the glass front door. Even intimate spaces, such as the master bathroom, are invited to enjoy the view with an extra-large window that overlooks the pool area. Clever details make this functional; the glass becomes opaque when the bathroom lights are on to ensure privacy.

Inside, an open kitchen overlooks a dining area and living room. This layout encourages harmonious transitions for the social couple. An open and fluid layout makes the smaller space feel more voluminous, finished with minimal and cool-toned neutrals. In addition to the master suite, guest bedroom, living room, kitchen, and dining area, a home office for two is situated at the main entrance.

The back of the home opens up both visually and physically to create an indoor/outdoor environment where the owners can enjoy the Southern California weather year-round. Interior space and material extend onto the patio under a cantilevered overhang that shelters an outdoor living area. On the patio, an infinity pool is accompanied by a comfortable outdoor bed overlooking the Pacific Ocean. To maintain unobstructed views looking out from the home, the patio is left without any railings. Instead, a low-profile fire pit acts as a safety guard. The landscaping consists of shorter succulents to assist in keeping an open view. Exterior materials were selected for their desired low maintenance; Trespa, Swiss Pearl, and metal siding wrap the facade and create a refined, simple, modern look.

Project team
A.A. Hijmans van den Bergh building Utrecht University
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