A couple from Venezuela with a split-level house in Bethesda wanted to transform their home into a modern, open and light filled space. The couple also entertains and requested a home that allowed the easy flow of guests from indoor to outdoor.
As part of the program, the main space would have an office, in addition to the living, dining and kitchen areas. The deign intention was to keep the expanded house efficient, and scale appropriate for the neighborhood. In addition, since the owners were from Venezuela, the use and role of color was important to the cohesiveness of the renovation.
The new varying ceiling section from front to rear of house, flat, slopped, high, low, accentuate the various activities of the program : entry, living, dining, and kitchen, along with the transition zone from existing to new space. Each area is also marked with color.
The entry is defined by yellow walls, while the living room is white with colorful art work. The dining space’s slopped orange ceiling with exposed wood joists has a backdrop of tall wood doors that slide across the room into the kitchen, which has a blue back wall fronted by the sliding blue walls of the office.
The dropped ceiling volume which is the transition between existing and new is marked with color changing LED strips. This changing ceiling height and use of color creates a 3-dimensional space within otherwise simple block volumes.
The volumes of the rear expansion were added to the existing rectangular footprint of the house. The resulting addition is a series of spaces which step out from the existing house based on function.
The interior walls which previously blocked natural light and views to the rear yard were removed, allowing for front to rear visual and spatial connections. The addition’s new sliding doors and large windows, along with new sky lights, bring in abundant natural light into the previous dark interiors.
Exterior materials for the addition include Hardi panel and Abet Laminati.