Guest House

Austin, Texas
Landscape Design
  • Environmental Survey Consulting
Builder
  • Don Crowell
Photographer
  • Paul Finkel
Location
  • Austin, Texas
  • Structure
  • House (Single Residence)
  • Type
  • Modern
  • Square Feet
  • 2500
  • Lot Size
  • 7.6 acres
  • Bedrooms
  • 3
  • Full Baths
  • 2
  • Partial Baths
  • 1
  • The Guest House, a sure but respectful object in the landscape, affords occupants an opportunity to reflect on the beauty of their natural surroundings. Located on a two-acre peninsula, the structure is surrounded by a landscape that includes reed-covered wetlands, which serve as a migratory stop for egrets, cranes, and swans.

    The beauty of the wetland environment informs many aspects of the project beginning with the access to the peninsula from the main house. The procession uses a light pedestrian bridge inspired by the reeds that surround the site; its raw construction heightens the experience and fosters a certain sense of adventure when entering into this more wild and natural world.

    To limit its ecological impact, the Guest House was conceived as a light vertical structure consisting of three floors with a minimal footprint. The ground floor—housing the kitchen, living, and dining areas—is separated from a surrounding terrace only by floor-to-ceiling glass. The sweeping covered deck appears to float above natural grade, with native grasses coming to its edge.

    A glass box covered with adjustable shutters hovers above the first floor roof; it contains the master bedroom on the second level and two rooms on the third. The shutters can be folded up to accommodate varying light conditions, and also provide protection for the house when it is not occupied. The steel windows of the cube are fully operable to encourage a greater interaction with the natural environment. The shuttered box is attached to a three-story space that contains the stair, bathrooms and closets. This volume is defined by a ribbon-like edge that adjusts itself to the needs of the spaces inside.

    The development of the project utilized a meticulous analysis of the existing vegetation and wildlife to implement a 10-year plan that will eliminate invasive plants, reintroduce native plants, and restore and increase the existing wetlands.

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    Exterior view at Guest House by Miró Rivera Architects Photo  of Guest House modern home

    Exterior view at Guest House by Miró Rivera Architects

    Exterior view at Guest House by Miró Rivera Architects Photo 2 of Guest House modern home

    Exterior view at Guest House by Miró Rivera Architects

    Exterior view at Guest House by Miró Rivera Architects Photo 3 of Guest House modern home

    Exterior view at Guest House by Miró Rivera Architects

    Jalousie windows and copper cladding at Guest House by Miró Rivera Architects Photo 4 of Guest House modern home

    Jalousie windows and copper cladding at Guest House by Miró Rivera Architects

    Jalousie windows at Guest House by Miró Rivera Architects Photo 5 of Guest House modern home

    Jalousie windows at Guest House by Miró Rivera Architects

    Bedroom at Guest House by Miró Rivera Architects Photo 6 of Guest House modern home

    Bedroom at Guest House by Miró Rivera Architects

    Patio at Guest House by Miró Rivera Architects Photo 7 of Guest House modern home

    Patio at Guest House by Miró Rivera Architects

    Patio at Guest House by Miró Rivera Architects Photo 8 of Guest House modern home

    Patio at Guest House by Miró Rivera Architects

    Front door at Guest House by Miró Rivera Architects Photo 9 of Guest House modern home

    Front door at Guest House by Miró Rivera Architects

    Entry at Guest House by Miró Rivera Architects Photo 10 of Guest House modern home

    Entry at Guest House by Miró Rivera Architects

    Closed jalousie windows at Guest House by Miró Rivera Architects Photo 11 of Guest House modern home

    Closed jalousie windows at Guest House by Miró Rivera Architects

    Open jalousie windows at Guest House by Miró Rivera Architects Photo 12 of Guest House modern home

    Open jalousie windows at Guest House by Miró Rivera Architects

    Exterior view at Guest House by Miró Rivera Architects Photo 13 of Guest House modern home

    Exterior view at Guest House by Miró Rivera Architects

    Patio at Guest House by Miró Rivera Architects Photo 14 of Guest House modern home

    Patio at Guest House by Miró Rivera Architects

    Exterior view at Guest House by Miró Rivera Architects Photo 15 of Guest House modern home

    Exterior view at Guest House by Miró Rivera Architects

    Copper cladding at Guest House by Miró Rivera Architects Photo 16 of Guest House modern home

    Copper cladding at Guest House by Miró Rivera Architects