Frame for outdoor living

Merit Award: Vacation house

Making the most of a narrow lot at the Sea Ranch – a primarily second-home community on the Sonoma coast – without compromising views or disrupting a cypress grove was the object here. Why it won: It resists the urge to hog the view of the Pacific Ocean, letting the landscape dominate the design. The architects placed Anne and Greg Evans’s one-story weekend house toward the rear of their narrow lot near a stand of cypress trees, where it would be less exposed to neighbors – thus drawing the view into a small compound consisting of the main living/dining/kitchen structure across a courtyard from the master suite. “We pulled the major pieces of the house apart to frame the ocean, letting the landscape and exterior living space take center stage,” says architect Eric Haesloop.

Design: Turnbull Griffin Haesloop Architects, Berkeley (510/841-9000)