Residential Design

VOL.4. 2018

A business-to-business magazine focused on the collaborative process and talented work of residential architects and custom homebuilders.

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Page 52 of 75

Twice as Nice Although the house feels very open with window walls all across the back and at its corners, the plan is more traditional than many modern houses. "Our client entertains family from Lebanon and has multiple gatherings for extended family, so they wanted a more formal plan than we typically design," Bob explains. That meant "two of everything," Car- men adds. "Two dining rooms and two living rooms." This is how a program swells to al- most 7,000 square feet. "The home was smaller when we started, but it got larger by adding the in-law guest suite and a first-floor bedroom," says Carmen. The couple added the bedroom as they came to realize this was likely their forever home, and they wanted to age in place. The house is certainly large, but very much in keeping with the size of typical homes in Atlanta's affluent areas. What's unusual is that the team designed it to minimize the scale of its appearance. Most of the area's "estate homes" or This page: The custom wall unit in the family room hides returns for the HVAC system. The family entrance also accesses a back stairs to the children's wing. "executive homes," as they are called, strut their size as much as possible. The house next door, built around the same time, is a case in point. It makes the most of its mega-mansion bloat for purposes of shock and awe. "What gets me," says Carmen, "is that it has the same fantastic view we do, but they only have one set of French doors and a couple of windows to take it in. And you have to go down a giant flight of stairs just to get to the backyard. For us, it's very import- ant to connect well to the outdoors." That's not easy with Atlanta's high Piedmont topography, nor with the market's predilection for a sprawling "terrace" level that must reside at least partially above ground and provide walk-out access to the yard. The result is that only the basement (let's call it what it is) really connects to the site, and the main level is left marooned aloft, 53 VOL. 4, 2018 RESIDENTIALDESIGNMAGA ZINE.COM

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