Highland Perch House

Montclair, New Jersey
Interior Design
  • Alyson Pardo
Landscape Design
  • Alyson Pardo
Builder
  • Alyson Pardo
Photographer
  • Chris Davis Photography
Location
  • Montclair, New Jersey
  • Structure
  • House (Single Residence)
  • Type
  • Modern
  • Year
  • 1960
  • Square Feet
  • 2000
  • Bedrooms
  • 4
  • Full Baths
  • 2
  • Highland Perch sits among a cluster of bold, mid-century modern homes, built along the highest ridge of Montclair, NJ. With views toward Manhattan’s skyline, this 2,000 sq. ft. residence is nestled atop a thickly wooded canopy, enjoying rare views of New York City just 12 miles away. Location is one thing, the state of decay was another. By the time its current home owner took charge of its complete makeover, the property had suffered substantial neglect. With no construction experience to speak of, homeowner Alyson Pardo - a former boutique clothing retailer - took the challenge to oversee its total transformation.

    Partnering with architects MADLAB, this self-taught maverick acted as general contractor and carpenter, meticulously reworking the home inside and out. Five years later, Highland Perch honors the experimental ethos of its original design while exploring subtle transformations in flows and materials. Its restoration thoughtfully preserves almost all of the existing structural wood framing, and crafts an open living floor plan with expansive windows and views of the surrounding forest ridge. The result is a poetic interplay between histories and futures, forest and city.

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    Modern home with Marble Backsplashe, Picture Window Type, White Cabinet, Range, Range Hood, Refrigerator, and Kitchen. New kitchen expands in all directions - from living room to ipe deck. Photo  of Highland Perch House

    New kitchen expands in all directions - from living room to ipe deck.

    Modern home with Storage, Exterior, Sliding Door Type, Picture Window Type, Sofa, End Tables, Coffee Tables, Casement Window Type, and Living Room. Wood beams radiate from a central structural core to support deep roof eaves, each one painstakingly refinished. New energy-efficient windows create a cozy moment. Photo 2 of Highland Perch House

    Wood beams radiate from a central structural core to support deep roof eaves, each one painstakingly refinished. New energy-efficient windows create a cozy moment.

    Modern home with Trees, Hardscapes, Wood Patio, Porch, Deck, Decking Patio, Porch, Deck, Metal Patio, Porch, Deck, Picture Window Type, Exterior, Sliding Door Type, Rooftop, Casement Window Type, and Outdoor. The new deck floats above the ground plane with a new exterior stair, offering up evenings of unobstructed New York City views while summoning up guests to join the party. Photo 3 of Highland Perch House

    The new deck floats above the ground plane with a new exterior stair, offering up evenings of unobstructed New York City views while summoning up guests to join the party.

    Modern home with Trees, Hardscapes, Storage, Picture Window Type, Rooftop, Casement Window Type, Outdoor, Front Yard, Shrubs, and Walkways. Towering high above the street,  the house glows among the trees. Photo 4 of Highland Perch House

    Towering high above the street, the house glows among the trees.

    Modern home with Picture Window Type, Casement Window Type, Bedroom, Storage, Medium Hardwood Floor, Bed, and Night Stands. New floor-to-ceiling windows bring dawn light and bird calls into the Master Bedroom. Photo 5 of Highland Perch House

    New floor-to-ceiling windows bring dawn light and bird calls into the Master Bedroom.

    Modern home with Storage, Picture Window Type, Casement Window Type, Shelves Storage Type, Medium Hardwood Floor, Wall Lighting, and Hallway. The stairwell brightens up with new openings to the kitchen and enlarged windows to the backyard. Photo 6 of Highland Perch House

    The stairwell brightens up with new openings to the kitchen and enlarged windows to the backyard.

    Modern home with Trees, Storage, Table, Picture Window Type, Sofa, End Tables, Coffee Tables, Casement Window Type, Shelves Storage Type, Sectional, Storage, Medium Hardwood Floor, and Living Room. The family room features custom-designed furnishings by the homeowner using exotic wood slabs. Photo 7 of Highland Perch House

    The family room features custom-designed furnishings by the homeowner using exotic wood slabs.

    Modern home with Trees, Wood Patio, Porch, Deck, Hardscapes, Decking Patio, Porch, Deck, Metal Patio, Porch, Deck, Rooftop, Large Patio, Porch, Deck, Shrubs, Back Yard, Gardens, Grass, Walkways, Outdoor, and Front Yard. The new ipe deck and backyard landscaping merge seamlessly as one expansive outdoor space. Photo 8 of Highland Perch House

    The new ipe deck and backyard landscaping merge seamlessly as one expansive outdoor space.