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Making Sense of the City

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The Mariscal residence in downtown San Diego is just one surprise in a city rarely associated with innovative urban structures.

 

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  Sebastian and Maricarmen Mariscal take in the sweeping western views from the balcony of their new downtown San Diego home, all the while keeping a watchful eye on Mateo and Olivia playing on the sidewalk below.  Photo by Randi Berez.
    Sebastian and Maricarmen Mariscal take in the sweeping western views from the balcony of their new downtown San Diego home, all the while keeping a watchful eye on Mateo and Olivia playing on the sidewalk below. Photo by Randi Berez.
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  The Mariscal family enjoys the first-floor patio, which Sebastian calls their “exterior room.”  Photo by Randi Berez.
    The Mariscal family enjoys the first-floor patio, which Sebastian calls their “exterior room.” Photo by Randi Berez.
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  MS-31 designed and built all the kitchen cabinetry, as well as the dining table, in collaboration with Archkinetics. The frosted-glass backsplash offers easy cleaning.  Photo by Randi Berez.
    MS-31 designed and built all the kitchen cabinetry, as well as the dining table, in collaboration with Archkinetics. The frosted-glass backsplash offers easy cleaning. Photo by Randi Berez.
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  Mateo and Olivia lounge in the living room that doubles as a screening room.  Photo by Randi Berez.
    Mateo and Olivia lounge in the living room that doubles as a screening room. Photo by Randi Berez.
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  The dining chairs are Yolanda side chairs by Ukao.  Photo by Randi Berez.
    The dining chairs are Yolanda side chairs by Ukao. Photo by Randi Berez.
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  The kitchen transitions into the living room, which transforms easily into a home theater when the heavy red drapes are pulled tightly shut. The home theater system features a projector by Sharp.  Photo by Randi Berez.
    The kitchen transitions into the living room, which transforms easily into a home theater when the heavy red drapes are pulled tightly shut. The home theater system features a projector by Sharp. Photo by Randi Berez.
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  All the west-facing windows frame the church across the street. Bookcases, also designed by MS-31, line the back wall. When the chairs and couch from Restoration Hardware face each other, it’s a cozy little living room. Turn the chairs around and it’s a full theater complete with an 11-by-17-foot image projected on the wall.  Photo by Randi Berez.
    All the west-facing windows frame the church across the street. Bookcases, also designed by MS-31, line the back wall. When the chairs and couch from Restoration Hardware face each other, it’s a cozy little living room. Turn the chairs around and it’s a full theater complete with an 11-by-17-foot image projected on the wall. Photo by Randi Berez.
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  The closet creates order in a space that has potential for disaster.  Photo by Randi Berez.
    The closet creates order in a space that has potential for disaster. Photo by Randi Berez.
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  Six-year-old Mateo’s bedroom, which he calls his “office,” provides an interesting contrast to his parents' orderly space. His talents are evident in his paintings, including “Dalmation” (a white sheet of paper with a single black dot in the center).  Photo by Randi Berez.
    Six-year-old Mateo’s bedroom, which he calls his “office,” provides an interesting contrast to his parents' orderly space. His talents are evident in his paintings, including “Dalmation” (a white sheet of paper with a single black dot in the center). Photo by Randi Berez.
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  Maricarmen takes in the view from her and Sebastian’s bedroom window, which frames the church’s cross. White curtains and a flokati rug add a welcome layer of calmness in a house that’s also home to their office and two young children.  Photo by Randi Berez.
    Maricarmen takes in the view from her and Sebastian’s bedroom window, which frames the church’s cross. White curtains and a flokati rug add a welcome layer of calmness in a house that’s also home to their office and two young children. Photo by Randi Berez.
  • 
  Both houses, viewed from across State Street. All walls were built in the empty lot next door as the foundation was poured, cutting down on costly construction time. The hazy skies in this photograph can be attributed to the Southern California fires of 2003.  Photo by Randi Berez.
    Both houses, viewed from across State Street. All walls were built in the empty lot next door as the foundation was poured, cutting down on costly construction time. The hazy skies in this photograph can be attributed to the Southern California fires of 2003. Photo by Randi Berez.

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