The heart of this project is a culture clash between civilizations.  An out of town developer bought a parcel in Silicon Valley with the intention of developing it into a marquee property near a local country club.  We were introduced through a mutual business acquaintance.  Seeing the opportunity with this site and the developer’s intentions we offered to execute the design on a percentage basis payable upon sale of the project.

Rethinking The Future Awards 2020
Third Award | Private Residence (Concept)

Project Name: Altos Residence
Studio Name: Stuart Grunow Architecture
Design Team: Stuart Grunow, Albiona Hoxha
Year: 2019
Location: Los Altos, CA

Altos Residence Stuart Grunow Architecture - Sheet1
©Stuart Grunow Architecture

The initial concept was a glasshouse with a view of the pool while standing at the front door.  To establish this project as attractive to the broadest population in the residential market we suggested that the home should have all of the most desirable amenities you would see in a home at the maximum price point.  These factors were agreed upon and we began the design process.

After having gone through a number of iterations and discussing the pros and cons of each we were presented with a concept produced by the developer’s cousin in Iran.  After having analyzed this concept we came to the conclusion that it was basically the same as what we had produced with the exception that it had none of the amenities that a California market would expect.  Instead, it had amenities that you might expect to see in Iran.  When we tried to explain this to the developer, he was adamant that we proceed with his cousin’s proposal.  This difference of opinion resulted in the termination of our agreement.

Altos Residence Stuart Grunow Architecture - Sheet2
©Stuart Grunow Architecture

Seeing the potential in what we had already produced we decided to complete the design to a developmental level including all the amenities we originally had in mind.  As you enter the house you are immediately greeted with a view through the structure to the pool.  The pool is visible from every room in the home.  To the right, you are greeted with stadium seating to the kitchen.  Modern kitchen as party room takes on a new twist.  The elevated living/dining room was conceived during site visits to maximize views of the valley below and provide visual interest from the exterior.  To the left of the entry is a guest room and behind that is the garage.  The garage has an interesting feature of status symbol showing off the owner’s vehicle of choice to the neighborhood behind glass.  The family room completes the 1st floor adjacent to the pool.  The second-floor filters down to the dining room and kitchen providing the family with forced interaction opportunities.  Master bedroom suite overlooking the pool and jack and jill bedroom round out the upper level.


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