From Britny Kalule
Located on a unique lot at the edge of downtown Steamboat Springs, this custom home fits perfectly into the existing neighborhood of traditional homes with its gable roof and rustic exterior. Inside, though, the couple’s European, modern aesthetic shines, offering a balanced and beautiful lesson in scale, floor plan layout and blending styles.
The homeowners hired the Vertical Arts team to handle all architecture, interior design and landscape design services. The team worked to create efficiency in site planning to design a livable, functional home that prioritizes experience over extra square footage. The lot’s steep grade required innovation and creativity to maximize views of Emerald Mountain on the main level of the home without interference from neighboring houses. The owners also wanted separate living quarters on the second level to serve as a mother-in-law suite complete with interior access and a private entrance from the garage.
Vertical Arts worked hard to juggle the two challenges – prioritizing amazing outdoor views and meeting the mother-in-law suite requirements – which informed the layout of the home and showcased the firm's ability to work with unique lots.
To accommodate the homeowners requests, the home was sited at a 45-degree angle on the lot. This allows for unobstructed views, optimized by a wraparound front porch and a side yard that connects the home to the neighborhood. Outside, a covered patio and boulder wall allow private enjoyment of the outdoors. The home’s exterior is a blend of modern and traditional—distinctly mountain, with a mix of wood, steel, and concrete, and with both gabled and flat roof tops. The front door, fabricated from hot-rolled raw steel, mimics a piece of art.
The landscape architecture team placed the main outdoor gathering spaces at the front of the house, facing the downtown neighborhood and used boulder walls to cut out the spaces. Grouping landscaping plants and vegetation creates pockets of privacy for the patio and adjoining side yard.
Inside is a marriage of German modern with mountain chalet style. Reclaimed wood walls continue inside the home, giving a rustic, yet minimalist, nod. Board formed concrete walls and kitchen cabinets, and concrete floors echo the home’s gray color palette which is warmed by the use of oak, white furnishings and bold accent colors throughout to give the home its distinctive, welcoming personality.
Oak ceilings begin outside and continue in the home’s main indoor living spaces, situated toward the front of the home to capitalize on views. Additional privacy is created using high-placed windows and an L-shaped, two-sided fireplace. Using smart use of space and compact design, the team delivered exactly what the homeowners wanted in their mountain home.
Functionality was a priority for each space in order to ensure day-to-day livability. The open floor plan is anchored by a galley kitchen layout with a pantry nested to the side. Modern Italian cabinets and a stainless steel backsplash are complemented by vintage elements, such as a rotary yellow phone.
The interior design defies a simple description. Instead it is eclectic and eye-catching. The neutral palette leaves room for vintage finds and evolving style. In the main living area, a vintage rug is paired with a modern velvet sofa, where we used soft materials to juxtapose the zinc concrete steel fireplace. Special moments throughout the home, like the entry hallway and staircase, allowed the team to be creative.
The result is a home that maintains the traditional mountain feeling of Steamboat Springs while threading in modern aesthetics.