40 TRILLIUM, SAN CARLOSMy clients, Al & Geri, bought this home, on the top of the hill at Club Drive, when it was an 1800 sq ft, 2 bedroom, 1 bath bungalow. The main selling points at that time were the amazing views and the large spaces around the house. It was a very large lot. In fact, we considered at one time building a spec house on the back of the lot. After many years and two children they finally decided to go for a remodel. When they did, they went all the way. We bought it up to almost 5000 sq ft with a full second story and a three car detached garage.This is a bit of a departure from my trademark Mid-Century Modern style. I can actually work in most styles. What Al and Geri wanted was a quasi Romanesque villa. We weren’t aiming for any specific, historic style, but more for the feel of certain classic design types. With the views available it was mandatory to focus the main rooms on them. The existing dining room was mainly unchanged and already commanded a corner view to the North and East. We expanded the living room out over the existing entry porch for more space and used what had been a roofed, outdoor, breezeway between the garage and kitchen as the new entry. By converting the garage to a large family room with a full bath we gained use of the view which had been from the garage door. This gave us a centrally located, formal entry. We then enclosed a part of the back patio to create a skylit solarium off the kitchen and behind the main living space. This has light all day, with a view of and access to the large back patio.With the garage converted I designed an oversized three car garage for Al’s project cars. This is on a slightly lower elevation than the main house so there is a covered walkway and stairs down to it. I used classic columns for the roof support of the passage and we named it “The Temple of the Winds”.Then we went upstairs. Tore the roof off the entire house, framed a new floor and added almost the same upstairs as there is downstairs. There is a large home office or fourth bedroom. The master suite consists of a generous bath with marble finish, an adult living room with view over the entire Bay Area connecting to a second story deck. The bedroom is on the corner directly above the dining room with a corner view. Down the hall, over the entry is a home gym with windows on all four sides.This home was a real labor of love. I had known Al and Geri for many years. Al and I built several restaurants together. We were friends and for several years prior to the actual project we discussed, designed, re-designed the home. It was to be a dream home for them and their two kids. Finally everyone was to have their own bathroom, their son and daughter had gotten past the age where sharing a bedroom was comfortable. So, this was a real celebration for all of us.My only regret is that Geri wouldn’t let me touch her kitchen. She had always loved her kitchen and said that she didn’t want to change it. Eventually she decided it could use an update, but by then the kids were out of college, the house was too big, and Al and Geri sold it and moved.Still, I look upon this as one of my favorite in the non-MCM style.
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