The “La Chica” lake house is located on a two-acre lot at the south end of Canyon Lake, where the original 1,200-square-foot building was elevated on wood columns to provide expansive views. In addition to two bedrooms, a bathroom, and a kitchen, the house included covered parking and storage beneath the elevated structure.
The house is a weekend home for a family of five, who named it “La Chica” to reflect its diminutive size and because CHICA includes the first letter of each family member’s name. The active family is very social, and the home is used extensively during the summer months and on holidays, providing a great setting for personal time and entertainment. The nearby lake supports skiing, boating, and other leisure activities year-round.
The owners’ requirements for the project included a vertical addition that would improve the views of the lake and give the house a large new family room and master suite. They also asked that the wrap-around porch be maintained.
A vertical addition to this weekend home improved the views of Canyon Lake and gave the house a new family room and master suite.
Our design maintains the familiarity of the column-supported structure while enhancing the house’s curb appeal. To make the addition appear seamless, we interlocked the vertical addition perpendicularly over the existing roof structure. This vertical addition is connected to the main floor with an architecturally expressive stair enclosure. The enclosure is supported by concrete columns and cantilevered over the supports to reflect the design’s visual weight and scale.
The family room (Sala de Vistas) on the upper level includes large windows on three sides that provide a 180-degree view of the lake and the property’s outdoor entertaining area. The room connects to the stair enclosure without any obstructions to provide an open flow between the spaces. The finishes in the family room reflect the family’s fun and active personality.
Located off the family room, the new master suite uses natural light to connect the interior and exterior, capitalizing on the site’s heavily wooded natural setting.
The house’s exterior reflects nautical elements with its sloped roof forms and windows and its mast-like columns. A vibrant crimson paint color invokes brightly colored sailboats on the lake and provides some interesting contrast with the house’s natural setting.
The existing support columns were wrapped in western red cedar siding and finished in a natural stain to add visual weight that makes them compatible with the new vertical addition. We used stucco to articulate scale and connect the crimson paint color to the warm wood stain.
The outdoor entrainment area, constructed in a subsequent phase, includes a sound-buffering wall made from natural stone, a roof structure with tensile-fabric panels, an outdoor shower, and a full outdoor kitchen.
The outdoor roof structure includes another nautical reference. The roof over the kitchen suggests the inverted bow of a boat, while the remaining roof structure is supported by mast-like columns and cantilevered framing that resemble sails.
The outdoor kitchen counter walls, clad in rusted Corten panels with steel branches, help keep the rugged outdoor setting in focus.
We designed and specified all of the project’s building materials and systems using best practices for sustainability, focusing on sustainable materials, waste management practices, and MEP systems. This including using stone materials sourced from local quarries and fabricators.