This is a large, rural property outside of Newberg, Oregon. The property is approximately ten acres with the structures sitting at the top of a rise overlooking the acreage. Barrowed views lay to the North, East and West. During the first few years of ownership, the clients focused on extensively remodeling the existing daylight ranch and building a separate, unattached studio for guests.
The existing landscape consisted of a few trees both deciduous and evergreen, a hedge of English laurel to sheld the property from the road and one Japanese maple. The rest was wild grasses pockmarked by ground squirrels’ excavations. In short, it was a blank slate.
The main goals were all about connections…connecting the main house to the studio in a graceful manner, connecting the existing deck on the back of the main house with the ground below and connecting the main house entry with a welcoming front garden.
There were visions of a fire pit, a water feature, perhaps a bocce ball court. But a space to entertain friends was a prime concern.
Wind. Because the property is a cleared, unencumbered slope, descending from south to north, the topography invited wind to sweep up the slope to the structures situated at the top. It could be blustery.
These clients were travelers, both nationally and internationally and they often traveled for weeks at a time, therefore the design needed to keep low maintenance in mind.
To create a strong relationship between the main house and the studio the primary patio was located between the two buildings. This was a generous space that could accommodate several functions, a fire pit, a barbeque, lounge furniture and a water feature. By tucking the patio between the two buildings, by keeping the profile low and planting low hedges and a grouping of small trees at the north edge we hoped to block the wind while maintaining the view. The back deck was remodeled to include a stair which linked the deck to the new patio and made the house’s kitchen accessible to the new entertaining space.