Ed Niles, FAIA. Great architecture often begins with a great site. Here in Bell Canyon, Niles found a flat pad atop a rise, screened from the street by huge boulders. From here one enjoys sweeping views south of steep canyon walls, the canyon itself, open spaces, big skies and dramatic rock formations. Exploiting the 1.3-acre lot, the house aligns along a single axis, with an eastern one-story, transparent kitchen-living-dining pavilion. From its midpoint entry the structure then stretches out westward to three bedrooms accessed by an all-glass corridor. The master suite perched above opens to roof decks facing east and west. Rich,...unadorned redwood and copper roofing provide shelter, yet clear expanses of transparent glass open “to the wonders of nature” in Niles’ words. The striking geometries of the house bring to mind a spacecraft at rest on an as yet-unspoiled planet; an object of the imagination unrestricted by aerodynamic concerns. Separate three-car garage, room for pool, ADU or stables.
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