Architecture and Interior Design: Kaplan Architects
General Contractor: Forrest Bodily Home Improvement
Structural Engineer: Element Structural Engineers, Inc.
Landscape Architect: Kikuchi + Kankel Design Group
Photographer: Mitch Shenker Photography
Kaplan Architects, established in 1985, is a San Francisco and East Bay-based Bay Area residential architects service firm engaged in projects throughout the Bay Area and beyond. At Kaplan Architects we believe in pursuing design excellence. We do this through thoughtful iteration of ideas, challenging our own preconceptions, and rethinking the solutions we develop.
We strive for the results of our work to be functional, timeless, and beautiful. We create spaces with our client’s needs and desires foremost in mind, and we strive to create spaces that are warm and inviting. Kaplan Architects specializes in mostly custom, high-end residential, and small commercial projects in San Francisco and throughout the Bay Area.
We have a strong capability in both the design and the technical aspects of the work. We design new homes, additions, and remodels. We can provide services to guide you through the entire design and building process.
We will develop a thoughtful and well-considered design, take you through any required planning department reviews, develop the technical details and permit drawings needed for construction and permits, procure the building permit, assist you with finding a good contractor, and work in concert with the contractor to make sure your project is executed as planned during construction.
We are your guide and advocate throughout the entire process. We can tailor our services to your specific needs and believe we are an exceptional value to our clients. Kaplan Architects has developed a reputation among its clients, other architects, and builders as a firm having unsurpassed quality and unequaled integrity.
It is our goal to always meet and enhance our reputation. The goal of Kaplan Architects is to leave every client completely satisfied with the services it has to offer. Mr. Kaplan believes that the interaction between client and architect can produce buildings that withstand the changes in fashion and time.
A complete design considers both the interior and exterior of the building as a totally integrated effort. Projects emerge from the client’s needs and desires while responding to the cues of the site, sun, and climate.
The owners of this house asked us to help them with a complete makeover of the main living areas of their ranch-style house. They had already completed a remodel of two bathrooms and experienced the frustration of not having a thoroughly thought-out idea of what they wanted before they started construction. When they choose us to do the project, we could see they valued the careful and thoughtful design approach we promote.
They were ideal clients and allowed us to guide them through the entire process from designing the layout, developing a comprehensive interior design, preparing thorough construction documents, assisting in the contractor selection, and being actively involved throughout the entire construction process.
The project required tackling three main objectives: to open up the main living areas including the kitchen, fix an enclosed courtyard with leaky skylights, and reconfigure and enlarge the existing laundry space. As part of the design process, we sought to improve the basic flow of the living space, create a more functional layout, and introduce more natural light opportunities.
As stated above, the main focus for the project involved the main living areas. We created one large consolidated space for the living room and kitchen and opened the view from that room to the newly refurbished rear garden area. We raised the ceiling in the main living space and incorporated several lighting sources to add the ability to create different lighting moods within the space.
We added much-needed storage areas along the hallways as well as in the entertainment center and kitchen space. One area of concern involved fixing an enclosed courtyard that had leaking skylights. The skylights had been added by a previous owner to enclose the former outdoor space that was located in the middle of the house.
The owners wanted to remodel the space so that it was more integrated into the house as an interior space, something the previous owner tried to do unsuccessfully. Our solution started with designing a new skylight system that would provide a more reliable barrier to the heat and water intrusion. We used a commercial product that was designed for large-span locations.
This product also had a nice way of filtering the light. In this new space, we were able to provide storage (shelves and cabinets) for the owners to organize their collections of books and objects. We also recommended a landscape architect and coordinated their work with ours in order to create an inviting and easy flow between the interior and outdoor spaces.
The rear yard was completely reconfigured with a new swimming pool, hardscape, planting, and outdoor lighting.