Project posted by Schwartz and Architecture

Overlook Guest House

House (Single Residence)

From Schwartz and Architecture

Overlook: a commanding position or view
Overlook: to fail to notice

Overlook: to care for

Despite an extremely steep, almost undevelopable, densely wooded site, the Overlook House creates a new accessible indoor/outdoor second dwelling that allows an aging family member to remain close by the main residence and independently at home. To maintain ease of access, the new diminutive 775 sq ft home incorporates the driveway approach and garage into a formalized entry sequence, transitioning fluidly to a cantilevered breezeway at the front door framing spectacular views across Silicon Valley.

Given the site’s dramatic slope, this entry terrace serves double duty as the only viable outdoor open space for the home. A large oval oculus cut out of this covered zone marks the entry as well as the path of the sun over the course of the day – a kind of ever-changing sun dial for a resident with limited activities and mobility.

From the pre-existing main house above on this property, this residence is easy to miss; its broad roof creates a simple, new horizon line through the trees without interrupting the valley views. The plan is simple – on one side a single living space modulated into distinct zones with built-in cabinetry, on the other, en-suite bedrooms connected by a large accessible bath and laundry – perfect for a resident and a caregiver.