Rosenthal Residence

CompanyWard+Blake Architects
ClientKatie Wilson
PrizeHonorable Mention
Entry Description

The site for this residence is steeply sloping from the entry level to the lower terrace level at the rear of the house. The topography coursing perpendicular to this slope takes the shape of the letter “W”. This natural land form was used as a tool to designate the zoning of the house. On the north leg of the “W” is the garage, laundry, and kitchen/dining area; this is oriented slightly north of east. In the center of the “W”, at the point, is the Entry and Living Space, looking due east. On the final leg of the “W” is the master bedroom/bath looking slightly south of east. This response to the natural topography sites the house with a sense of natural repose. The volume of the house is compressed at the entry, and as one moves into the living space, one experiences a release of this compression as the roof rises to clear the mountains and embrace the sky. This is enhanced by the land falling away simultaneously, giving the outdoor decks a feeling of weightlessness. The desire to build a residence in traditional materials, but recodified for the 21st century, led to the use of hand-hewn rectangular logs with dovetailed joints for the exterior siding. On the opposite side of the house, the extroverted façade is composed primarily of glass. The guard rails on the exterior decks are detailed with steel flats to keep the panoramic view through them as uninterrupted as possible. The interior palate of materials is kept as simple as the exterior with the intent to create an environment that is beautiful as well as tolerant of the demand put upon it by a high altitude mountain lifestyle. Polished concrete floors, painted gypsum walls, and wood ceilings capitalize on the light that floods the residence.

About Designer

Ward + Blake Architects was built on a distinctive vision: be provocative in thought, flexible in nature, and disciplined in execution. Since 1996, Ward + Blake have been creating spaces that reference the land and the history of the region while also embracing cutting-edge construction materials and techniques. We have created a working environment where the powers of innovation, smart building and creativity flourish. Our firm is composed of twelve trained professional people including four Licensed Architects, six Intern Architects, an Interior Designer and an Office Manager. Ward+Blake Architects is organized horizontally rather than vertically, which is to say that we realize our design work utilizing the strengths of our staff members at all phases of the project. This horizontal stratification allows the principals to be involved from schematic design through construction documents, ensuring that design goals remain in focus and project objectives are obtained. Ward + Blake believes that architecture should respond to its particular place and be a natural partner with the environment. The firm’s designs evolve from an appreciation for pragmatic solutions within the honesty of modernism. By working within the context of our rich environment and applying sustainable strategies to a wide variety of building types and project scopes, Ward + Blake designs architecture that conserves energy and natural resources while creating high performance buildings and healthy environments for the buildings occupants. We listen carefully to the desires, goals and program of our clients. Ward + Blake has an excellent track record averaging less than 1% change orders on our commercial and educational projects.