This year's Sunset Ideas Houses are part of a mixed-use development in a pedestrian-orientered transit district of Palo Alto, California, near offices, a train station, shopping, and entertainment.
Dubbed the Smart Homes, the duo of 1,500-square-foot, side-by-side townhomes were designed for two forward-thinking (albeit imaginary) couples. The Optimists live life on the go, use the latest high-tech gadgets, and love a colorful, modern style. Equally at ease with innovation, the Explorers are worldly travelers, always just returning from a trip or planning one. These profiles sparked the ideas that follow.