Bay Area Architects Share the Hottest High-End Features from Their Custom Projects



Built this year, this nearly 11,000 square-foot residence in Los Altos Hills is on the market with the DeLeon Realty Team for $18 million.While natural light, views and space will always be the ultimate luxuries, cutting-edge building products and technologies can be just as impressive in the right hands. We spoke to leading Bay Area architects and developers about the hottest high-end features they are specifying for their custom projects.

To achieve maximum curb appeal, architects often design impressively scaled doors. Taking the grand entrance to the next level, they are now specifying offset pivot doors—oversized doors that pivot on an axis instead of hinges—to great dramatic effect. Victor Mezhvinsky, founder of MT Development, recently installed a state-of-the-art Oikos offset pivot door at a Glen Park residence. Swatt | Miers architects also recently designed a custom, ever-so-slightly translucent glass pivot door to grace the entrance of a Portola Valley Home. For even greater wow factor, Mezhvinsky has also installed several retractable glass roofs, including an enormous 16-by-10-foot skylight in a Cow Hollow home (And since skylights don’t count towards residential height limitations—they can sit two feet above the ceiling—they allow for more interior space).

Four-by-four-foot tiles were employed by architect Carrie Bernstein in a Berkeley home.While walls of sliding glass have become de rigueur in modern settings, there are innovative new options. To bring a sense of transparency to a house in Pacific Heights, Jensen Architects (the firm responsible for the design of new arts center Minnesota Street Project) turned to Swiss company Vitrocsa, who makes the most minimalist sliding doors in the industry. Notes principal Frank Merritt: “It’s amazing the size of glass you get with such little frame.”

Sophisticated surfaces are another opportunity to give a home polish. Developer Melvin Vaughn of Vaughn House recently installed a Mataverde Eurotec decking system at a new estate in the Los Altos Hills (listed for $18 million with DeLeon Realty). The ipe-wood boards attach to metal rails via hidden clips, so there are no screws to mar the deck surface.  New technology is also driving large-scale tile; architect Cary Bernstein is using large-format porcelain tile in a Berkeley home—she chose a four-by-four-foot tile with a subtle raised texture from the Dechirer line by Patricia Urquiola for Mutina.

Four-by-four-foot tiles were employed by architect Carrie Berstein in a Berkeley home.A less-glamorous­—but extremely significant—home feature is the heating and cooling system. “We’ve found that traditional HVAC systems are often incompatible with the clean, thin lines of modern architecture, and our clients are also concerned with the allergens that they distribute,” says architect Mark English. He is finishing up one of the first homes in the area where both heating and cooling are handled through a hydronic system. While hydronic heating systems that run hot water through pipes in the floor are common, the Atherton estate’s Daikin Altherma hydronic system also uses chilled water for cooling. It manages 10 separate zones in the home so that each area can have its own temperature setting—a luxury that can’t be seen but can certainly be appreciated.

Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit Module
76 Windmill Lane, Bridgehampton
On 2+/- acres, landscaped for complete privacy, this complex consists of three interconnected enameled clad steel barns custom designed by Jack Ceglic, with radiant heat concrete floors, maintenance free exteriors and grand, open spaces. The 4,600+/- sq. ft. main house offers custom kitchen, master and guest suites, library and half bath. All rooms open to large mahogany terrace. The guest house/studio has 2 bedrooms, 2 baths, and separate study. Heated gunite lap pool.



View more details about 76 Windmill Lane

Edit ModuleShow Tags
5 Green Pond Road, New Milford, CT
Litchfield County's fabled Candlelight Farms Airport. This is a rare opportunity to own one of CT's few grass strip airports. Moments from Candlewood Lake and all that Litchfield County offers. Bucolic 35 acre setting with 2,900 ft. turf runway. The collector-quality hangar boasts a steel framed, 6,000 sq ft structure with automatic doors. Spacious enough to store up to 10 Piper Cub size planes. Perfect for a private user, a collective of enthusiasts or a commercial investment.



View more details about 5 Green Pond Road

Edit ModuleShow Tags
64 Birchwood Lane, Bridgehampton
6,100 SF Barn-style home conveniently located between Bridgehampton and Sag Harbor. With six bedrooms, six full baths and two half baths, this home will entertain family and friends all year round with two fireplaces, one of which is in the spacious master suite. Enter into a Grand entry foyer, 10’–11’ ceilings throughout main level and into a designer kitchen. Relax outside with beautiful landscaping and a heated gunite pool. Integrated concierge through Chaloners for an effortless Bridgehampton lifestyle.

Barn and Vine

View more details about 64 Birchwood Lane

Edit ModuleShow Tags
20 Hook Pond Lane, East Hampton
On a private lane in the Hook Pond estate area is a new home designed by Abstract Builders. The 10,000 SF home (on 3 levels) is perfectly sited on a 1.6 acre lot to take full advantage of the pond and ocean views. Dramatic open kitchen, dining and living space opens to the outside; includes 7 ensuite bedrooms, plus light-filled lower level with billiards, viewing room, wine cellar and sauna. Outside, landscaped grounds surround a gunite pool, spa and pool house.



View more details about 20 Hook Pond Lane

Edit ModuleShow Tags
57 Miller Lane East, East Hampton
Charming East Hampton cottage renovated in 2013 was transformed into a 2,500+/- sq. ft. dream home. On the first level are two bedrooms, a bath, open living areas, and a sunroom. The bluestone sun porch overlooks a beautiful pool and pool house with garden. Upstairs master suite features a bath with marble herringbone floor with nickel Samuel Heath shower fixtures. Custom window treatments, Phillip Jeffries wallpaper throughout and Sonos inside and outside.



View more details about 57 Miller Lane East

Edit ModuleShow Tags
11 Musket Ridge Road, Wilton CT
Perched at the top of a roaring Silvermine River waterfall on almost 4 acres, the property spreads out into Wilton and New Canaan. Every inch of this home has been perfected to capture the timeless appeal of the river while exuding ultimate refinement and good taste. The architect-designed home captures river views and sounds, and almost every room opens to one of the magnificent decks or to a private balcony. Call Ileana Barns Slavin Associates-William Raveis at (203) 246-7215.

11 Musket Ridge Road

View more details about 11 Musket Ridge Road
Edit ModuleShow Tags Edit Module

Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags Edit Module
 
Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags