The location of this home, atop the Eola Hills near Salem, Oregon, USA, guarantees views of the beautiful mountains and city of Salem to the east, and the rolling hills and wine country to the west. When low clouds descend on the valley in the morning, the home, designed by Ueda Design Studio, appears to be on top of the world.
The owners, a couple with two young children and two German shepherds, called upon Ueda Design Studio to create a comfortable residence for their family, taking advantage of the spectacular views from the site and serving as a refuge for their professional life. Overall, the building had to strike a balance between providing a sense of retreat with functionality and sustainability. The design is inspired by Japan, with an emphasis on the relationship between inside and outside, and framed views. Spaces transition from cozy intimacy to large open rooms. In fact, the mile-long winding driveway leading to the home provides fleeting openings to the mountains, hills and the mansion that emerges at every turn. The sequence evokes the qualities of a traditional Japanese teahouse approach. The focal point of this construction is the combination of the living room, dining room and kitchen. The dining room is topped by a 26-foot high ceiling and walls of windows on three sides. Sustainability was a driving force in the completion of this project. The goal was to create a high-performance, energy-efficient building that could last for the next 100 years. On the exterior, the material palette is simple and timeless with earth tones, including cedar siding, fiber cement panels, concrete and steel that require little to no maintenance. The structure is wrapped with continuous exterior insulation and a rainscreen system with a metal roof over it. High performance aluminum doors and windows. A state-of-the-art heating, ventilation and air conditioning system includes high-efficiency heat pumps and a hydraulic radiant heating system. Awning windows, located on the dining room wall, open to cool the space, minimizing the need for air conditioning. And automatic exterior sunshades reduce heat gain from the strong summer sun.