Venice House by Daly Genik

The transformation of a disheartening stucco-box house and in-law entailed reskinning the structures in perforated metal envelopes.

Santa Monica practice Daly Genik noted the site, with a two-bedroom main house and pied-a-terre above the garage, reverses the more common relationship between primary house and guest house found in this Palms/Venice neighborhood. The garage and apartment face the street, while the primary residence is located at the rear of the site, both units facing a lush courtyard. The main house, enthusiastically remodeled in the 1980s in a Santa Fe-inspired vocabulary, had a single bedroom and an open loft. The clients who purchased the property wanted to update the house to accommodate their growing family and frequent in-law visits.

The primary design challenges were to reconsider the building structures and allow shared use by an extended family while maintaining varying levels of privacy and increase the amount of filtered daylight available throughout the main house and apartment.

The main house had to remain within its original zoning envelope at the rear of the site. An eight-foot addition to the courtyard increased the building from 1,700 to 2,300 square feet and allowed for a complete reorganization of the interior spaces. Living spaces increased to a total of three bedrooms and three baths. The roof of a dank rear room was removed, allowing for an outdoor dining courtyard that opens to the kitchen and study. The two-story façade facing the courtyard is entirely glazed, which in turn is shaded by a folding, perforated metal skin that rests on an aluminum exoskeleton.

This perforated skin and supporting aluminum armature is mirrored across the courtyard by a folding enclosure surrounding the garage apartment. Only these building surfaces extend into the courtyard and float above the courtyard. Primarily designed as sun shades, they provide privacy and filtered natural light into the main living spaces of the house and apartment. In addition they form the support structure for balconies that extend from the master bedroom of the main house and the apartment to allow family members to see each other across the property. In the evening these garden lanterns float above the lush courtyard.
Photograph © Benny Chan_Fotoworks.
Photograph © Benny Chan_Fotoworks.
The studio apartment above the garage is completely transformed on the interior and organized around generous adjoining outdoor spaces: a balcony at the main level and a roof deck above. Both buildings are passively cooled in the summertime by the metal screens, significant landscaping, and operable windows providing ventilation throughout. Domestic hot water, including radiant heating in the floors, is supplied by solar collectors on the roof of the house.

Daly Genik Architects was established in 1990 by Kevin Daly and Chris Genik, and it is based Santa Monica, CA.
Photograph © Benny Chan_Fotoworks.
Photograph © Benny Chan_Fotoworks.
Photograph © Jason Schmidt.
Photograph © Jason Schmidt.
Photographs © Benny Chan_Fotoworks.
Photographs © Benny Chan_Fotoworks.
Photograph © Jason Schmidt.
Photograph © Jason Schmidt.

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