3.07.2008

stal tre hus ~ steel tree house

a couple of years ago in lake tahoe, california, joel sherman of jls design set out to prove it is possible to create modern design that fits into the landscape in that high-end residential market. veering completely from the usual "bear-moose-fish-motif" found in the tahoe mountain setting, joel sherman's decidedly contemporary design lifts the house up into the canopy of surrounding trees. the narrow lot drops away substantially at one end so sherman used this to a great design advantage by creating a plan where vertical plaster towers step down in to the lot supporting the bulk of the residence and elevating it to a treehouse effect.
the largest portion of the 2,500-square-foot residence, the garage, is subtly designed into the program of the house and hidden behind opaque shoji-like doors. at the same level as the garage, a wooden plank leads to the residence's main entrance. once inside, access is available to the lofted master bedroom, master bath, the private porch, as well as the garage. a glass-and-steel enclosed stairwell leads to the level below which houses two bedrooms, a living room, and kitchen and dining area.

the design shows an excellent fusion of indoor and outdoor spaces. from the tasmanian red oak floors to the cherry wood cabinetry to the panels of redwood juxtaposed against the plaster towers on the house’s exterior, the natural woodland theme is reflected continuously. another means of merging interior and exterior spaces is the use of transparency. not only did joel sherman use large panels of glazing and glass-wrapped corners, but he also designed the interior spaces so that the residents would have access to outdoor views from a variety of locations, not just from rooms on the house's perimeter.



another fascinating aspect of stal tre hus is the fact that it's the result of the combined efforts of architect and client. the architect successfully brought a modern design sensibility to the area, while the client, an owner of a wood construction company, actively participated in the building of his dream house. wanting to be as much a part of the construction as possible, the client became certified in welding and personally welded every piece of steel throughout his new home. i really appreciate a symbiotic process like this, and would love to see this house in person some day.

{photos and info from jls design & architectural record}

13 comments:

Alex said...

Nice house for a milonga...

acaligurl said...

love the view of the giant tree with snow.
the kitchen would be the place to have a party.. get together what have you. far cry from a 'cabin in tahoe'!!

studio wellspring said...

so true alex ~ it looks like a very nice house for a lot of different activities actually. so dreamy!

studio wellspring said...

hi acaligurl! that's why i was so taken with the story of it ~ rustic it is not...it's clearly modern, but still it fits so well with the natural setting.

paris parfait said...

Who wouldn't want to live there, at least part of the time! Gorgeous design.

Bhavna said...

Incredible design! And it blends in...does not stand out in the environ..

studio wellspring said...

hi tara ~ i'm with you! it would be such a fabulous haven.

so true bhavna ~ the design is incredible indeed.

At Home with Kim Vallee said...

This is truly an amazing house. I love the architecture. A peaceful retreat that is well of its time. I would certainly entertain a lot in a house like this.

momo said...

is this the house from the twilight movie??

studio wellspring said...

hi momo ~ no it's not the same house in twilight....but i'm totally on a mission to find that house. it is amazing! i'll do a post on it when i find it....stay tuned. ;o)

Anonymous said...

its a nice house... an eye catching house with lovely design

Daria said...

Breathtakingly beautiful inside and out, love the idea of more views (not only from the rooms).

Kitchen Sinks said...

this house on landscape is looking amazing. nice way of designing