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Cole Valley

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Cole Valley Residence
Cole Valley, San Francisco, CA

When longtime residents of San Francisco’s Cole Valley purchased their 1906 single level home their immediate instinct was to preserve the traditional elements of the existing house including cove molding, wainscoting and trim while opening it up with light-filled spaces and a contemporary feel.

The design involved the reconfiguring of the existing home with a vertical addition adding much needed space for the growing family. The resulting home is a visual history of old and new as you move from traditional up front to more contemporary at the back. Upon entry, a new stair greets guests bringing light from the 3rd story skylight into the entry hall. Here, at the heart of the house, a painted wood slatted guardrail is a nod to the past while a frosted glass rail beyond, introduces the contemporary design. At the rear of the living level, the new kitchen/family room/work areas open to the garden and invite the family guests for gatherings. A material palette of walnut, painted cabinets and soapstone is used here and throughout the house.

The stair connects the middle living level to the 3rd floor upstairs suite for the parents and down to the garden level, the children’s domain. A facetted arced ceiling, lined with clear heart cedar, opens the parent’s bed and sitting room to a view of San Francisco and the Marin Headlands. The children’s bedrooms open to a terrace and backyard inviting the children and their guests for a bit of soccer practice.