Residential Design

VOL3 2019

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

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California's history of modern archi- tecture is all about connecting to the temperate climate, and it's hard to think of a better site for the continuation of that story than in Sonoma's wine country, about 85 miles north of San Francisco. The couple who own Split Rock Springs Ranch, a 30-minute drive up a winding road from the tiny town of Cloverdale, lived in a tent compound on their 160-acre property for several years before they asked Nielsen:Schuh Architects to design a permanent house. The two men had left behind a life in the Hollywood music industry to live remotely, planting a large olive orchard from which they make oil that is sold locally. They slept in one tent, cooked in another, and showered outside. "They had spent so much time shut- ting themselves off from the traditional things houses have, like formal entries, that they were very open-minded," says Amy Nielsen, who runs the firm with her husband, Richard Schuh. "They also raise show dogs and are judges. Our first meeting with them was on a rainy day, and there were all these well-behaved dogs, Dobermans, in the tent with us." It's easy to picture a life with dogs in this camp-like compound, composed of a 2,331-square-foot main house and a 453-square-foot guest house. Ori- ented north-south, the main building's rectangular footprint sits just below the top of a small mountain and contains a mudroom/office, open living space, and master bedroom and bath. A wall of glass on the long west side opens to a bar-shaped pool facing the orchard and the view. The couple does much of their cooking outside next to the pool, where a barbeque grill and dining area are tucked under the deeply cantilevered Opposite page and this page: This small, off-the-grid compound occupies only a fraction of its remote 160-acre property outside of Cloverdale, Calif. The clients camped on the land for several years before commissioning a minimalist permanent dwelling. 69 VOL. 3, 2019 RESIDENTIALDESIGNMAGA ZINE.COM

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