A home in Victory Ranch caught my eye a month ago, and I was lucky to get a photo assignment for a closer look last week. Landmarks West (also known as iBuild Utah) demonstrated their ability to artfully build these traditional forms and work with the different expressions of wood and stone in the design by Carr Warner Architects of Chicago, the firm that also executed the interior design.
In a time where many homes take inspiration from mid-century forms, this one resonated turn-of-century with its warm woods and detailing. I particularly loved the open outdoor room with timber supports and a substantial stone fireplace anchoring one end. It’s furnished for both meals and lounging, and the glass to the adjoining kitchen opens for a pass-though for food and refreshments, making it a natural place to gather for watching the sunsets against the Wasatch.
The outdoor room, seen on the left of the front façade, is already becoming screened from the street side by trees. The home’s proportions are reminiscent of 100-year-old mountain and lakeside vacation lodges.
I was struck while making photographs of the similarity of the living area to the lounge of a historic small hotel I photographed in Aiken, South Carolina. The large living area was similarly broken up into a number of small seating areas for conversation with soft upholstered furniture. Wainscoting reaches two-thirds of the way up the wall, and sconces and lamps set the lighting lower with chandeliers mounted high for ambient light.
The home’s main floor is a semi-open plan of connected living, kitchen, multiple tables, casual television viewing, and the lounge, and a private master bedroom suite. All connect to outdoor living. Above the garage are children’s rooms and a bunkroom. Downstairs is a junior master, long hallway of guest rooms, home theater, and informal recreation play space. The number of guest rooms (I remember about seven) reinforced my earlier impression of a small hotel, and explains the needs for the ample kitchen and dining space for entertaining.
The long, wide wooden kitchen island provides plenty of workspace and bar seating.
Turning 90 degrees in the kitchen makes the range, butler’s pantry, and pantry visible, along with the hinged windows over the sink that open as a pass-through to the covered outdoor room.
The pantries mix painted and natural wood in the farmhouse detailing.
In early afternoon, I was discouraged by the dense smoke from the fires to the south and felt the fires would make the photos too murky for showing the relationship of the home to the environment. But, Jared Higgins and Van Kelly persuaded me to stay, and sure enough, the winds shifted and the air cleared. Hopefully the recent rains will put an end to all the wildfires for this season.
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