A 1920s brick house in a historic Denver neighborhood suffered from small, dark rooms and was cut off from the garden.
Why it won: The design integrates house and landscape with a handsome L-shaped patio edged with a long water feature that doubles as a bench. Owners Jim Theye and Dee Chirafisi like to entertain, and the newly expanded living/dining space now opens to the patio on two sides so parties can flow easily into the garden. "We took out a lot of walls and enlarged some openings to create a real connection between indoors and out," Chirafisi says. The living area even includes a pivoting support bracket for a flat-screen television beside a sliding door, allowing for outdoor movies.
Design: Sarah Brown, Dalton Davis, and Dave Robb, Semple Brown Design, Denver (303/571-4137)