At the base of an extinct volcano in Truckee, California sits a minimalist ski house called the Lookout House. Designed by Faulkner Architects, the home reflects the site’s geological history and surrounding landscape of Jeffrey pine and white fir trees. Full-height openings with sliding doors open the space to the southwesterly breezes, while concrete walls extend beyond the interior environment to create exterior territories at each end.
The earth-covered entry level houses the garage, playroom, craft room and ski locker. Living and cooking spaces are found in the singular form of the main space, while the bedrooms are concealed by screens. A vertical access cuts through the house and concrete walls extend into the slope, providing access for skiing. A narrow slot within the house’s massing mirrors the continuous space of the ski run.
Other elements reference the home’s particular building site. Red-orange glass suggests the color of cooling magma and bathes the entry and central stair in light. Although 20-inch-thick concrete walls enclose the space, the home maintains a warm and cozy interior environment with detailed California walnut screens, heated floors, natural furnishings and filtered light from the colored glass. Basalt, used for the floors throughout the space, connects the house to the volcanic basalt boulders strewn throughout the surrounding landscape.
Take a closer look at the Lookout House in the images above and head to Faulkner Architects’ website for more information on past and current projects.