Kitchen and Bath: Mountain Modern

A major winter storm that's set to dump loads of snow in the Sierra Nevadas this week has us thinking about hitting the slopes and then cozying up in a stylish mountain getaway—such as this one by  and .


The kitchen (at right) is home to barstools from Mark Albrecht Studio, a light fixture from Urban Electric, a Waterworks faucet and a countertop by Sonoma Cast Stone.

California's mountain region is known for more than snow—it's associated with a certain regional style that's instantly recognizable (think rustic mountain lodge). The design team was hired to remodel this lakefront Tahoe house that had the rustic look in spades, and the new idea was to preserve the warmth of the original home, but make it more modern.

The idea is demonstrated in the kitchen and bathroom we feature here. Macdonald relied on regional colors, rich textures and restraint (clean lines and crisp finishes) to strike the right balance. "We layered finishes and materials to create visual interest and richness in the space," Macdonald says. "If they aren't perfectly balanced, it can easily become too much and too busy."

The overall color palette pays homage to the site, which has blue tones (the lake), green hues (the surrounding redwoods) and gray-browns and blacks (the mountains that ring the area).

In the kitchen, black and cream tones are established in the travertine slab the designer selected for the backsplash—Macdonald calls the lines in the stone "reminiscent of the horizon and the surrounding mountains." Woven black-leather chairs by Mark Albrecht, a custom blackened range hood, a customized dark-metal light fixture and cabinets crafted from reclaimed wood pick up and amplify the color and texture theme. Curtains on the large glass doors soften the space.

The floor tile is Redbank Decorative Tile by Waterworks, the Soleil tile on the shower wall is by Ann Sacks and the penny round tile on the shower floor is from Ceramic Tile Design. The sconces are from Restoration Hardware and the reclaimed-wood vanity is topped by a Sonoma Cast Stone countertop. The leather hardware is by Superfront.

In one of the bathrooms, patterned tiles set the style. "This was one of the first finishes I selected and presented to the clients," says Macdonald. "Not only are they a nod to Native American patterns, they were a guiding element for the palette throughout." In this room, a framed black-and-white photo of the client's mother as a teenager on Lake Tahoe strikes a cozy note (the designer enlarged and framed other, similar family photos and hung them throughout).

The result is a kitchen and bath that have all the comfort and warmth of a traditional mountain home, but also the style and materials of today. 





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