House on the Bluffs

House on the Bluffs

Taylor Smyth Architects
Toronto, Canada
Project Year
Private Houses

House on the Bluffs

Taylor Smyth Architects as Architects

Perched on the edge of the Scarborough Bluffs, the dramatic views afforded by this site encompass lake and sky through the tall trunks of mature trees. The foundations of the owner’s childhood home have been reused to create a new residence that celebrates this spectacular location. This allowed us to leave the trees, some of which are growing very close to the house, untouched.

Viewed from the street, the house is a simple stucco box distinguished by a screen of vertical channel glass that provides privacy while allowing diffuse natural light into the stair, guest bathroom and master bathroom. At night it glows like an oversized lantern.

Ontario Algonquin limestone wraps from the front wall around to the recessed entrance and then reappears inside, establishing a recurring theme of blurring the distinction between outside and inside. The same material reappears within the two storey living room.

The rear of the house, facing Lake Ontario, dissolves completely into a two storey wall of glass, punctured by the volume of the master bedroom that cantilevers out from over the dining room below. This volume is distinguished by a cladding of charcoal coloured fibre cement panels, both inside and out. A long linear skylight runs along this volume, further splitting it off from the rest of the house and washing natural light deep into the space between the open living and dining room.

Client l Private Type l New Construction Size l 2,300 sq. ft. Completed l 2011 Images l Ben Rahn/A-Frame Inc.

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