Designed for devout Buddhists, this contemporary getaway invites the outdoors in with massive, moveable walls of glass.

Minimally separated by LaCantina walls of glass, the interior white-washed fumed oak flooring flows into the Alaskan yellow cedar deck built at the same elevation.

When a pair of San Francisco tech executives purchased a Stinson Beach property sandwiched between the Marin Hills and Bolinas Lagoon, it was clear from the get-go that the extraordinary site had all the makings of a serene retreat.

Yet, despite the pristine landscape, the existing 1960s home that came with the property was in desperate need of a facelift.

Inspired by a vision of zen living, the couple tapped architect John Kleman of San Francisco–based Kleman Design to bring their dream vacation house to life with a focus on indoor/outdoor living—a design he achieved with the use of LaCantina Doors throughout.

Located an hour north of San Francisco, the vacation home embraces views in two directions: the Marin Hills and a marine bird sanctuary to the east, and the sparkling waters of the Bolinas Lagoon to the west.

Located an hour north of San Francisco, the vacation home embraces views in two directions: the Marin Hills and a marine bird sanctuary to the east, and the sparkling waters of the Bolinas Lagoon to the west.

Matthew Millman Photography

“Their goal from the very beginning was to make the house as calm and serene a place as possible by taking the site as sacred,” says John, who began the renovation by stripping the decayed, shingle-clad structure down to its studs.

Relying on a natural materials palette, he reimagined the 1,700-square-foot building into a contemporary dwelling that defers to the landscape. “The building is meant to feel like a natural place, so it’s all about simplicity, directness, and honesty with the materials.”

Examples of his restrained design approach can be seen in the low-maintenance, standing-seam metal roof as well as the new Western Red Cedar exterior siding that’s left untreated to develop a silvery gray patina over time.



Beautiful views of the Buddha statue and lagoon can be seen in the approach to the front entrance flanked by Japanese maples. The homeowners often leave the rear LaCantina  doors wide open for continuous indoor/outdoor connection.

Beautiful views of the Buddha statue and lagoon can be seen in the approach to the front entrance flanked by Japanese maples. The homeowners often leave the rear LaCantina doors wide open for continuous indoor/outdoor connection.

Matthew Millman Photography

Moveable walls of glass were also crucial for tying together the minimalist indoor/outdoor design. John, who loved the “very crisp and contemporary detailing” of LaCantina Doors, knew from experience that their line of Aluminum Thermally Controlled folding and multi slide door systems would be perfect for enhancing the Stinson Beach House.

“Our work was aimed at removing everything not essential to reveal the potential of the building’s unique site—anything that was a distraction to the view was minimized,” adds John.

Minimally separated by LaCantina walls of glass, the interior white-washed fumed oak flooring flows into the Alaskan yellow cedar deck built at the same elevation.

Minimally separated by LaCantina walls of glass, the interior white-washed fumed oak flooring flows into the Alaskan yellow cedar deck built at the same elevation.

Matthew Millman Photography

See the full story on Dwell.com: A Zen Retreat Champions Indoor/Outdoor Living in Coastal California

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