Architects: Heliotrope Architects
Location: Orcas Island, WA
Photography: Sean Airhart
Contractor: David Shore
Interior Furnishings: Ore Studios
Located on a rocky, wind-swept south facing shoreline; this 1,600 sqf retreat home nestles into the landscape in order to harmonize with it’s surroundings and minimize exposure to weather. Designed with retractable wall panels to protect from punishing winter storms, the house nevertheless opens up completely to the outdoors when the weather is fair — allowing the owners to fully interact with the landscape and view.
The house opens up completely to the outdoors when the weather is fair
The site is within the San Juan Islands National Monument, with extremely sensitive shorelines and marine environment. In order to minimize impacts to natural systems, a garden roof was employed to replace landscape lost to construction, and storm-water flows were engineered to replicate the pre-construction condition. Local materials (primarily douglas fir and western red cedar) and local craftspeople were utilized in all aspects of the project. [Project description by the Architects]