Cloud | Cave

Seattle, WA

The project is conceived through the metaphors of the cloud and the cave. 

A cloud is a place that is non-terrestrial. It is ephemeral, scaleless, singular, and independent of the context. As a cloud, the project replaces a terrestrial context with deliberately framed connections to the water and the sky.

A cave shelters and provides seclusion and protection. It removes and isolates one from an external context. As a cave, the project provides a place outside the demands of daily life. It provides a retreat for the client and a place for his collection.

One ascends into the cloud/cave. Leaving the ground and the office building below, a plate steel stair rises from space carved into the existing building. Climbing this stair through a void in the underside of the new structure is like emerging onto the deck of a ferry. It transports one into the space of the lake, sky, and distant views.

In the cloud/cave, exterior connections are choreographed and deliberate. The bathroom is a sky space. Compact in footprint, it is tall and open to only the clouds above. It is simultaneously sheltered and exposed. The bedroom adjoins a courtyard landscape. It is an idealized terrestrial space. The lounging space frames the waters of Lake Washington and the mountains beyond through a panoramic opening. The deck removes all connections to the ground; situating the clients in a space between the earth and sky.

Design 2012-13

920 sf

Harriott Valentine Engineers