L.A. at Home

Design, Architecture, Gardens,
Southern California Living

« Previous Post | L.A. at Home Home | Next Post »

Pro Portfolio: Ehrlich Architects' indoor-outdoor family home in Pacific Palisades

January 31, 2011 |  7:00 am


Every Monday we post a new home whose design is presented in the designer's own words. This week:

Architects: Steven Ehrlich, design principal, and Takashi Yanai, principal-in-charge, Ehrlich Architects, Culver City. General contractor: Horizon General Contractors, Santa Monica. Structural engineer: William Koh & Associates, Tarzana. Mechanical engineer: Mel Bilow, Burbank. Lighting designer: Erin Erdman, Hermosa Beach. Landscape architect: Barry Beer Design, Los Angeles.  

Carrillo_Residence_Hand_Ske Project: Construction of a 4,000-square-foot house with 500-square-foot garage

Location: Pacific Palisades

Architects' description: The Carrillo residence occupies a long, narrow site on the rim of Santa Monica Canyon with distant views Carrillo_Residence_8_Barry_ of the Pacific Ocean. Designed for a young couple with two children, the house addresses the formal and informal needs of the family while taking advantage of the Southern California climate and views. A series of stone masses defines the ground-floor plan while a pristine, floating white box houses the bedroom wings and slides over and past the stone to gesture toward the canyon and the views. 

The glass living room sits at the far end of the site and divides the outdoor space into two distinct courts. The informal front court provides a protected, sun-filled play yard for the children adjacent to the family zone. The formal rear court is composed of an outdoor dining area, a barbecue and an infinity-edge pool, an area that expands toward the view beyond.  The living room and dining room can be completely opened up to this court by a series of oversized pivot doors. The large expanses of glass of the living room visually connect the formal and informal domains and allow for the view to extend through to the canyon beyond. A custom wood ceiling and custom-stained concrete inside and out emphasize this sense of visual continuity.

Keep reading to see more photos and details on the house ...

Carrillo_Residence_1_Barry_View of the house from the entry gate. A meandering approach cuts across the "family zone" court, which is inhabited by Claude Lalanne sheep scultpures.



In the front courtyard, looking into the family room and kitchen.



The formal living area opens to the front courtyard as well as the back courtyard on the other side, creating an airy pavilion.



Floor-to-ceiling pivoting glass doors lead from the living area to the back courtyard. An infinity pool and covered dining area allow the family to take in the panormic ocean and canyon views.


Carrillo_Residence_7_Barry_Back inside, the room has a custom walnut ceiling, which visually sets it apart from the rest of the house.


Carrillo_Residence_9_Barry_The open-plan kitchen is a Bulthaup Los Angeles design finished in a white laminate and walnut. Floor-to-ceiling cabinetry serves as one end of the space; on the opposite side, out of frame, a freestanding half-height walnut cabinet separates the kitchen from the family area. Built-in cabinets are used throughout the home to divide larger spaces into smaller areas. The Eames wire chairs are from Herman Miller.



Walnut panels and stairs are juxtaposed against full-height glass. The house's formal adult zone and informal family zones (including the master suite and children's rooms on the second floor) are separated by the stairs and can be closed off by pocket doors. A play area upstairs can be converted into a third bedroom later, if needed.


Subtle colors and textures, including river-rock tile flooring, turn the master bath into a retreat.


Carrillo_Residence_12_BarrySliding-glass doors allow the master suite to open up to panoramic views. The cantilevered space includes a deck that extends toward to the canyon and provides cover for the outdoor dining area below. The angle of the roof above the terrace as well as the infinity edge of the pool run parallel to the canyon below.



In the floorplans for the Carrillo residence, the first floor is depicted on top, and the second floor is below.

-- Compiled by Lisa Boone

Photos credit: Barry Schwartz. Floor plans and sketch courtesy of Ehrlich Architects


Modern makeover in Manhattan Beach 

Midcentury update in Encino 

1960s house for greener times

Burbank tract house made modern

Indoor-outdoor Calabasas contemporary