Canyon_House_Hero@2x-Side Facade and mountain view


Design Challenge

How did the architects transform this dilapidated property into a high-end residence on a low-end cost?

Design Solution

The goal of this remodel was to take advantage of the expansive mountain views to the northwest and Channel Island views to the southwest, opening the brand new interiors to the exterior surroundings all while on a very tight budget...hard to do in Santa Barbara. Luckily, the layout was decent and we did not have to do any structural upgrades to the home. Some of the interior non-load bearing walls were moved or relocated to expand and reorganized to increase livability. In a few areas, new sliders were added to open the home to the expansive canyon views and allow for more natural daylighting. With the layout staying largely the same and the openness of the windows, we focused our efforts on selecting materials and colors that brought a timeless contemporary feel to the home. The brand new kitchen was masterfully designed and crafted for the aspiring chef with open views to the mountains. The living room has been carefully designed with a custom fireplace and hidden media center to provide maximum views which opens out onto a new deck. The upper level of the main residence has three bedrooms and two bathrooms. One bedroom is equipped with an en-suite bathroom and balcony with breathtaking views of the Channel Islands to the South and Cathedral Peak to the North. Every space opens up to the natural hillside and mountain views connecting you with the exterior and the scenery beyond. There are two structures on the site, the Main Residence and the Accessory Unit. The lower level of the accessory unit consists of a two-car garage and workshop. The space above is a multi-purpose space and can be utilized for a multitude of scenarios. It’s complete with a ¾ bathroom and two sliding glass doors that open to a balcony and majestic views of the Islands and Los Padres Mountains. Contemporary influences were professionally weaved into the rustic fabric of the 1970’s home. Every surface has been replaced throughout and is distinctly contemporary and approachable.

Canyon House-2-Main House and Accessory Unit Rendering
Canyon House-3-Accessory Unit and Main House in background from driveway

Project Data

.97 acres
3,448 sf
Montecito, CA
Clay Aurell
Josh Blumer
Clay Aurell, AIA | Josh Blumer, AIA
Barber Builders
AB design studio, inc.
Landscape Architect
CommonGround Landscape Architecture
Canyon House-4-Site Plan Rendering
Canyon House-5-Aerial Birds Eye View
Canyon House-Front Entrance and Canteliver Deck
Canyon House-7-Front door
Canyon House-8-Main Residence with Accessory Unit in background
Canyon House-9-Main Residence
Canyon House-10-Front entrance and deck
Canyon House-11-Entry paver detail
Canyon House-12-Deck and outdoor fireplace detail
Canyon House-13-Open floorplan Living and Dining area looking toward windows
Canyon House-14-Open floorplan Living and Dining looking toward kitchen
Canyon House-15-Front barndoor top open from interior
Canyon House-16-Main entry and stair
Canyon House-17-Open floorplan Living, Dining, Kitchen and Front Entry
Canyon House-18-Kitchen looking toward rear sliding glass door
Canyon House-19-Kitchen from second floor overhang
Canyon House-20-Portrait kitchen looking toward rear sliding glass door
Canyon House-21-Portrait kitchen looking toward laundry room
Canyon House-22-Master bedroom and walk-in closet barn door
Canyon House-23-Guest room office space
Canyon House-26-Main level bathroom looking toward entrance
Canyon House-27-Guest room en suite bathroom
Canyon House-28-Main level bathroom looking toward window
Canyon House-29-Drone shot of main residence from canyon