A Sustainable, Tree House-Like Home Rises Amidst the Redwoods in Palo Alto



Gently resting on a slender lot in Silicon Valley, this award-winning dwelling balances indoor/outdoor living with ample privacy.

To further the home's indoor/outdoor connection, the architects created an expansive shaded terrace at the rear of the property, which is juxtaposed with the backyard pool.

Sprawling across 5,870 square feet, Tree House by Aidlin Darling Design is set on a long, narrow property in Palo Alto, California. Consisting of interlocking volumes clad in zinc, cedar, stucco, and glass, this L-shaped two-story abode offers expansive living spaces that extend into the landscape. 

Clad in zinc, stucco, cedar, and glass, Tree House by Aidlin Darling Design is a slender, two-story home composed of interlocking rectangular volumes, and fronted with a low-lying garage.

The slender two-story residence is clad in zinc, stucco, cedar, and glass. A low-lying garage sits at the front of the home.

Photo by Adam Rouse

When the clients—a young couple with two children—approached the San Francisco–based firm, they brought specific criteria to the design process. They yearned  for a home that was spacious and open, but they also wanted the dwelling to offer cozy and quiet areas of refuge.

The 5,870-square-foot home gracefully stretches in a linear fashion from the front to the back of the lot. It rests atop a concrete plinth—a response to the site's high water table.

The 5,870-square-foot home gracefully stretches in a linear fashion from the front to the back of the lot. It rests atop a concrete plinth—a response to the site’s high water table.

Photo by Adam Rouse

Dense suburbs often pose challenges for architects seeking to maximize indoor/outdoor living while providing privacy. In this case, the property’s anchoring coastal live oaks and redwoods inform a spatial arrangement of framed views, outdoor rooms, and cover for privacy.

The home’s concrete floors, wood ceilings, and glazed expanses strengthen its connection with the outdoor landscape.

The home’s concrete floors, wood ceilings, and glazed expanses strengthen its connection with the outdoor landscape.

Photo by Adam Rouse

See the full story on Dwell.com: A Sustainable, Tree House-Like Home Rises Amidst the Redwoods in Palo Alto

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