Washington Park House
Architect: PRENTISS + BALANCE + WICKLINE ARCHITECTS
Designer: HOLLY MCKINLEY INTERIOR DESIGN
Photos: STEVE KEATING
When our clients decided to build themselves a new house on the lot next door to their current house, which we had remodeled years ago, they again chose to work with Prentiss + Balance + Wickline Architects, Holly McKinley Interior Design, and Schultz Miller.
As a team, we were comfortable with each other, and, just as importantly, we understood the challenges of the extremely steep hillside site and small buildable area. Simply getting the house up out of the ground required a complex concrete foundation anchored by 50 auger cast piles. To set the piles, we had to build temporary retaining walls to create terraces for the pile driving machine, stair-stepping up from the bottom of the site.
The reward for the effort involved in constructing the foundation is a home with a commanding view east across Lake Washington to the Cascades and south to Mount Rainier. Above the basement level is a media room, wine cellar, guest suite, and one-bedroom accessory dwelling unit with its own entrance and private deck. On the main level, a connected kitchen, living, and dining space opens onto an ipe deck and a stone terrace that steps down to a hillside garden. From the house, the deck, or the terrace, you feel as though you’re floating above the lake.
The house features a winning mix of traditional forms modern details. Rift-sawn white oak paneling and plank flooring provide warmth, while crisp lines and minimal trim give the interior a clean look that complements artwork the owners have collected on their many travels. A two-story map of the world graces the wall beside the main staircase.