The Fore Residence is a two-story modern cottage designed to fit into the fabric of the historic Maple Ridge neighborhood, but with a streamlined modern edge. The home was originally designed in 1984 by KSQ Design’s Managing Principal, David Short, then later renovated in 2011.
The original owners requested that the garage not face the street, yet the lot was not large enough for the typical detached carriage house approach.
A pattern language began to take shape as we considered how to approach both the site and the owner’s aesthetic desires. The layout of two perfect squares joined at the second level was the innovative solution. This symmetry and simplicity became the guiding principles for the design decisions that followed.
The lower level combines the main functions of the house– the formal living and dining–to face the street and side yards, with the kitchen and informal dining facing the backyard and having access to the garage. The second level provides ample space for a family with two children–two bedrooms and bathrooms plus a guest room/study overlooking the informal dining below. The third level of the larger square accommodates the master bedroom suite. Privacy and views make this room special with its 12 on 12 pitched ceiling.
The level above the garage became “the room in the trees” family room that overlooked the backyard and future pool. This room became the central family gathering space complete with a fireplace, high ceilings, and glassy views of the mature oaks in this historic neighborhood.
Perhaps the signature feature created in David’s original design was the dramatic radius glass wall and double-volume ceiling in the kitchen overlooking the backyard. Other design details included gutters integrated into the walls, and lit cupolas on the roof to provide a lantern effect.
In 2011 the home’s second chapter began to take shape. Purchased by an empty-nester couple whose aesthetic tastes were evolving from traditional, European-inspired design toward a more streamlined, contemporary look and feel, this modern cottage was the ideal fit. With the bones of the home timeless and symmetrical, the renovations took place primarily in three areas: the kitchen, baths and the addition of an outdoor room and pool.
Removing walls separating the entrance, dining and living from the kitchen was the first order of business. This provided a sense of openness and ease of entertaining important to the new owners. And the area inside the kitchen’s significant radius glass wall was reimagined with a luxurious curved granite countertop, complete with curved prep sink ideal for icing drinks for a crowd. Two guest baths and the master bath–which featured 80s-era tile and finishes–now featured natural stone in earth-tone palettes and windows in a once-cavernous shower.
A barrel vault dormer originally perched on the front of the roof, and a second was added in the renovation to further push the symmetry and provide dimension, especially when lit at night. The addition of an outdoor room, where the new owners do two-thirds of their cooking now, and pool with a water feature were the final touches on the renovation. This outdoor room also follows the perfect square pattern language established in the original 1984 plans. Placing this structure and its double-sided fireplace in line with the dining room and the kitchen’s curved glass window provided a sight line that feels as if it were always there. A new waterfall not only added soothing sights and sounds to the outdoor space, but also transformed the south side of the garage from a large brick wall into a significant design statement.