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Collection by Laura C. Mallonee

Bright Renovation of a 1970s Home

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Finding undeveloped land in the idyllic Californian city of Carmel-by-the-Sea is next to impossible. So when Austrian architect Mary Ann Schicketanz decided to leave rural Big Sur, where she had lived for 21 years, and move to town, she looked for a good lot with a house she could tear down. But when she found a two-bedroom built in 1972, she instead embarked on a massive renovation of the structure. The end result? A LEED Gold-certified urban hideaway that bows to its modernist history, while giving off a distinctly contemporary feeling.

Architect Mary Ann Schicketanz transformed the old entryway into a private courtyard, replacing the door and window…
Before When Schicketanz bought the 2,054-square-foot house for $650,000 in 2012, it was dark and dilapidated, sinking…
Schicketanz whitewashed the living room’s wood walls and replaced the carpet with teak flooring reclaimed from…
Before In the original east-facing living room, the light was partially blocked by a poorly located fireplace.
The house is set on a forested hill, which means the backyard—though scenic—is too steep to enjoy. It’s also…
This house in Carmel by the Sea is enlivened by its very red kitchen cabinetry. By knocking down a dividing wall, the…
Guests now dine on a table from Coup d’Etat in the space where the residents used to enter the house. The dining room…
The updated master bathroom features white concrete floors, painted wood walls, and veneer plaster ceilings. Light…
On the house’s lower level, Schicketanz’s guests have a bathroom complete with a steam shower to themselves. Anodized…
“When you have a tiny house, having outdoor spaces off a room can make a big difference,” Schicketanz says. Luckily,…
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