Arbol House

Mount Washington


A renovation and addition to a 1920’s cottage with a 1955 addition by notable Los Angeles mid-century architects Buff & Hensman nestled into the hills of Mount Washington.


Two dark plaster boxes contain bedrooms in the former cottage and a kitchen in the new addition. The boxes bookend and contrast the delicate post & beam glassy structure which houses the main living areas. Serving as a framework for a new entry sequence to the home from the street, the boxes conceal the open living area from view to create a sense of surprise upon arrival as well as providing a greater sense of privacy. 

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Playing off the transparency of the Buff and Hensman addition, new openings were carefully located in the boxes strengthening the home’s connections to the garden outside. This is further reinforced by the addition of a series of new patios and decks which connect the three structures together and expand the small home’s footprint with outdoor cooking, dining and living areas.

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Renderings, plans, and photos © ORA