A Compact Three-Story Brick Loft in San Francisco
Tasked with transforming a 93-square-foot brick boiler room, built in 1916, into a guesthouse, architect and metalworker Christi Azevedo flexed her creative muscle.
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"Whether it’s 100 or 1,000 square feet, it’s about going in and looking at opportunities," she says. In this case, she saw a chance to experiment with light, volume, and materials. The architect spent a year and a half designing and fabricating nearly everything in the structure save for the original brick walls. "I treated the interior like a custom piece of furniture," she says. She raised the roof five feet and added a full kitchen, a bathroom, closets, and a sleeping loft, accessed via a steel ship’s ladder and a glass walkway.
"When you step inside, you don’t feel like you’re in a small space," says Azevedo, noting that the split-level design draws the eye up through the structure, which rises to 17 feet in the tallest section. Visitors liken the interior to a tree house—an assessment that makes Azevedo proud. "We don’t want to lose the delight in architecture," she says.