HOUSE AT RICH PASSAGE
Bainbridge Island, Washington
Hobbs Home Building

   This 3,600 square foot family house is located in a forested setting on the shores of Puget Sound. Natural materials and a reverence for the site were major design concerns.

   The design program for this waterfront house for an active family of four was centered around classic northwest themes including access and control of natural light, water and mountain views, and a setting of tall cedars and firs. We set out to create a house that expressed the ethos of the arts and crafts movement, but in a clearly contemporary way, using materials of our time. The design also blends kindred influences from the understated, wood-based modernism of Scandinavia. The wooded site is a very long gently sloping rectangle with ninety-three feet of width at the waterfront. Privacy was important because neighboring houses are quite close on either side. The plan follows the contours of the site. High quality windows and deep overhangs are a response to the strong southwest windstorms and harsh afternoon sunlight.

   The four bedroom 3,800 sq. ft. plan has an informal layout with kitchen, dining and living rooms open to each other and the water views to the west. Filtered morning sun is brought in through a large skylit "atrium" over the kitchen. Wall space and lighting is designed specifically for the owner's art collection. The living room is designed for a grand piano and can become an intimate recital space for musical gatherings verandah A sauna and outdoor shower are provided. Upstairs, a master suite features a shower with a view and a prominent deck on which a hot tub is set, perched high on angled columns like a tree house. The two car garage is detached from the house and has a childrens' play space above.

   The owners directed us to use natural materials throughout, including recycled fir columns and beams with steel connections, natural woods, wood windows, a hand troweled concrete finish on floors and countertops. Low V.O.C. paints, finishes, and exterior stains were used. Weathered cascade granite and bluestone were used to set off the structure, which is comprised entirely of wood products.