Contemporay Intrigue in Mercer Island Courtyard House | Home Design Find

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Contemporay Intrigue in Mercer Island Courtyard House

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An eerie cool light comes in from the courtyard dug out of the hillside around this house on Mercer Island in Washington.

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An inverted version features at the center of the house; a ‘courtyard” that contains and conceals the stairs.


Within, a beautiful fireplace clad in black contrasts with the warmth of the flame.


Black steel, concrete and glass also form the courtyard that is the central concept of this beautiful contemporary holiday home by Hutchison and Maul.


Like many holiday houses, the contemporary beauty overlooks a watery view.

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The Courtyard House is clad in corrosion-resistant metal, not only the roof, but the walls.

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It can be entered by a bridge that crosses above the courtyard that is dug out of the hillside.


Stairs take you down into the center of the house between walls forming this dizzying external passageway.

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Local rocky remnants of the steep hillside are given a reverent placement at the entrance.
The Washington climate is frequently foggy and rainy so the house is designed to give both views and protection from cold.
Floor to ceiling glazing with energy conserving double pane glass combines with the warmth of a fire.

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The internal courtyard can be viewed from two sides.

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From the courtyard itself, the watery view can be seen through the house.


The enormous concrete base indicates the steepness of the narrow site, and why the tall concrete courtyard made sense.

While downstairs all is rich dark woods and black steel; upstairs forms a contrast.

Serenely facing out across the water, colors give way to peaceful all-white interiors.

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