When they were commissioned to redesign a brick septic building in San Francisco, California, Osterhaus Architecture took on the challenge of creating a new complex.

They aimed to use lots of natural materials and features and to let the house’s traditional brick facade stand out. Glass wall and large windows were added in order to connect the indoor and outdoor spaces and to allow the beautiful oak trees, birches and flowers to be admired from inside and outside the house.

Brick Courtyard House Designed By Smiths Contracting Photo 2

Sometimes houses need just a few small but necessary accent pieces to stand out. In San Francisco, for example, there’s a house designed by Smiths Contracting that only has one small space in the backyard. Its front is almost entirely open, featuring glass walls and sliding doors that link the indoor and outdoor areas.

Brick Courtyard House Designed By Smiths Contracting Photo 3

Featuring a similar design approach, the Hamersley Road Residence features panoramic views of the surrounding area and the house itself. All the outdoor social areas and recreational spaces are connected, creating a very well-balanced and harmonious composition.

The indoor areas are placed in the continuation of the living spaces, linking the new two wings. The lower level of the house is designed as an open and airy social zone with access to the garden and the natural topography.

The bedrooms are facing both the front and the rear of the house. Rough concrete walls define the layout, separating the sleeping areas in the most elegant way. Above, the social areas get their wooden flooring, a detail which later becomes covered with wood boards.

The northernmost portion of the house is the social zone where the kitchen, dining and living areas are formed together. A curved, wood-clad ceiling introduces geometric contrast to the design of the two concrete volumes that frame it.

At the back of the house the design is a bit different in the sense that it’s not a completely enclosed space, being somewhere in between. There’s an area enclosed by tall wooden walls with sharp corners and large windows at the front as well as a corridor with square windows that links the kitchen to the bathroom.

The connection to the wood-clad ceiling is a very strong one. The woodpaved social area features a small coffee table with a marble top that serves as a subtle focal point for the space. The concrete volume that forms the gateway to the other bedrooms shares similar characteristics, being a collection of concrete boxes designed to house outdoor functions for a variety of spaces.

The social zone also has access to a spacious balcony which provides a view of the surroundings and the house itself. The kitchen and the dining area are positioned here where they can take full advantage of the views and the strong connection with the outdoors.

The bathroom has its own glass walls, the area where the shower is located insulated between the concrete walls and the flooring.

A sculptural spiral staircase connects the social area to the private areas including the bedrooms.

The entrance hall has large windows with views of the front garden, the swimming pool and the living space. It’s a space with indoor and outdoor areas, some of which can be reached by using the staircase.

At night, when the sun is out, the interior light is reflected into the concrete walls, filling the voids and highlighting the sculptural design of the house as a whole.