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Utah Style and Design

House Tour: Modern Family

July 16, 2018


In Orem, a talented team pulls out all the stops to create a contemporary dwelling that’s fashionable, functional and, most importantly, family-friendly.

 The design and layout of the home were dictated by the wedge-shaped lot and the surrounding landscape. “It was all about the views,” says architect Kelly Swan. “The architecture is impactful, but the interior is clean, simple, and minimal.”

When you hear the term “family home,” you likely picture a wholesome Leave it to Beaver-style abode. But today’s modern families are living in spaces that offer far more design drama than the set of a sitcom. Case in point: Dave and Larissa Allred’s contemporary glass house in The Berkshires, a luxury neighborhood located in Orem.

A pivoting front door frames a view through the two-story entry into the great room and swimming pool beyond.

“We knew we wanted a modern home with a lot of glass, but we also wanted something kid- and family-friendly,” says Larissa. The couple’s wish list included a large play area, a killer master suite, a separate kids space, indoor-outdoor living and views for days. They also wanted to incorporate mid-century modern furniture and a minimalist, less-is-more approach to interior design.

To make their dream home a reality, they turned to the team at Ezra Lee Design & Build, including principal Ezra Lee, architect Kelly Swan and senior interior designer Landon Taylor. “A young family’s lifestyle is a reflection of how they set up their home,” says Taylor. “There’s less stuff, more technology and everything is lighter and brighter.”

The entry’s two-story, sculptural staircase features cable rails and floating wood treads that allow light to flow through its large structure.

A dazzling modern chandelier brightens the kitchen and dining areas.

Open to the spacious living area, the kitchen boasts open shelves, a waterfall island and quartz countertops.

“The modern family wants a home that’s efficient, with amenities in cross-utilized spaces so the family can function,” adds Lee. “They want to do more in their home than just eat and sleep—they want to recreate.” To that end, the team designed a large entertainment area and indoor recreation center on the home’s bottom level. “Our top priority was to create epic experiences for our children,” says Dave. The space includes a home theater, stage for music, poker and pool tables, home gym, sports court, golf simulator, and a combined rock climbing wall and foam pit with a jumping platform off of the kitchen. Naturally, “It’s the kids favorite area of the home,” says Dave. Epic play zone? Check.

The lower level’s combined rock climbing wall and foam pit is directly below a jumping platform located off the kitchen above.

The home’s non-traditional floor plan fulfilled more of the Allreds’ wishes too. The great room, kitchen, dining room, and a luxurious master suite are all on the main floor, while the children’s bedrooms and a communal kids’ loft are located upstairs. “We built a loft upstairs that all of the kids bedrooms encircle where they can do their homework, play games, watch movies and socialize,” explains Dave. Peace and quiet for mom and dad? Double check.

The master’s custom headboard wall is made from individual, vinyl-leather wall panels, while the fireplace is crafted of interlocking steel panels. the high ceiling’s dark hue makes the room feel more intimate.

In the master bathroom, a cantilevered platform with square openings overhangs the vanity, defining this area of the high-ceilinged space and making it feel cozier.

“The floor plan creates privacy for Dave and Larissa, and there’s an independence factor for the kids, as well an element of security,” says Swan. But that doesn’t mean the kids are completely out of sight—a large glass wall along the loft area located above the open kitchen allows Dave and Larissa to keep an eye on their kin. “The design of the home is very much about visibility and transparency,” adds Swan.

The overall glass structure and open, fluid layout have the added bonus of producing lots of natural light, beautiful views of the surrounding valley and mountains and a seamless connection to the outside of the home. Sliding glass doors open up to an outdoor pool, hot tub and fire pit. Easy indoor-outdoor living and sweeping views? Triple check.

Sliding glass doors sen from the great room and master suite to the backyard featuring outdoor living areas, a large pool, hot tub. fire pit, trampoline and playground.

By the time the Allreds moved in, all of their wishes had been granted. “The kids love the home, and we’re able to spend time together both indoors and outdoors,” says Dave. What more could you ask for in a family home than that?

Homeowners Dave and Larissa Allred gather with their children (from left): Cadance, Aria, London and Mason.

by Tessa Woolf | Photos by Scot Zimmerman

Want to see more? Check out our magazine! 

Utah Style & Design

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