La Jolla beach residence

Landscape Architecture

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  • Location: London
  • Type: Landscape Architecture
  • Program: Program 1
  • Year: 2017

Discipline and restraint are two words that are not often associated with a residence of this scale, and yet this approach is precisely the one taken for this remodel. This home is actually the recycling and greening of an original house built, and then once already poorly remodeled, on this four-acre, bluff-top, ocean fronting site. The structure, the materials, and many of the components of the original house were recycled along with the entitlements. The simplicity of the forms and the limited material palate are extraordinary in this scale of the home, and in this neighborhood of wealth.

A primary goal was to create a home for the long term for a sports-minded family that was quiet and private. In addition, the home also needed to provide much more expansive space on occasion for large-scale charity fund raising events, and business entertaining. The house is designed into three zones, family living, recreation, and entertaining. The experiential sequence is of a continuous unveiling of transitional layers from strong and secure more perimeter benchmarks, to more progressively open semi-public, and then safe and private spaces for living.

A secondary goal was to restore and protect the fragile bluff high above the beach below. Planted in sweeping drifts, native and naturalized grasses replaced the mowed, water consuming, grasses of a previous three-hole private golf course. The grasses animate the bluff and ridges while retaining the slope. Additional plants that require little water were selected to provide patterns of color and texture when viewed from the house.