Owl Creek Residence by Skylab Architecture
Skylab Architecture of Portland has designed the spectacular 4,200 square feet Owl Creek Residence in Snowmass, Colorado. It has a very unusual, triangular floor plan which is made to respond to the constraints of the site on which the residence is built.
The strict constraints presented a challenge for the architects who, instead of allowing themselves to be limited by them, they used them as an advantage. The structure has been anchored into the surrounding environment and it opens up to create strong visual connections to the idyllic landscape.
Anchored in a hillside with panoramic Snowmass Mountain views, the Owl Creek Residence was built as a shared family retreat. Site constraints were central in the design response, informing the spatial concept to triangulate to work with the existing sloping terrain.
The project vision was to create a collection of lodge-like communal spaces surrounded by naturally weathered and local materials providing an abundance of access to natural light, and minimizing visual separation from the outdoors. This all weather mountain retreat is about enhancing and recharging social relations and maximizing connections to the native environment. The shared residence was designed around the idea that a place can deepen the connections between people, families and the landscape they love.
Finishes and interior relationships were carefully crafted to draw the scenic landscape inward and extending the outdoor deck living experience. A central spiraling split-level arrangement allows for the living room, fireplace, bar and lounge to feel like intimate spaces with a communal energy. Terracing theater seating maximizes space within the stairwell working with the topography.
The strict height limitation and slope constraints of the site turned into an advantage by anchoring the structure into the landforms. The structure frames powerful views through two principal façades, maximizing the visual connection to the landscape at every angle. Strategic decisions in the frame and form allowed for efficiencies and functional benefits, including a triangular structural steel frame with car decking to minimize costs through prefabrication, and a roof slope to move water and snow downslope.
Compact and efficient private sleeping wings open up to expansive outdoor views at the lower level. Exterior spaces open interior activity to the outdoors including a triangular spa with an elevated deck and an expansive outdoor terrace right off of the kitchen. The Owl Creek residence provides a platform to gather in a shared living environment connected to their surroundings with purpose, deepening family connections.