This contemporary Mediterranean home sits on a steep hillside with stunning ocean views but no level outdoor space or access to most of the property down the hill. The owners wanted a native garden and fruit trees, outdoor entertaining space, a small guesthouse, lap pool, and solar panels for electricity and pool heating. A patio at the back of the house with a fountain and fire begins the new sequence of spaces; a curved stone stair links the house to the terraced levels below. The design strategy allowed the natural contours of the land to suggest the angle, location, and width of each terrace. A steel pergola shelters a sitting area on the highest level; the next terrace accommodates a broad entertaining area with fireplace, an outdoor kitchen, and guesthouse; the lowest terrace includes the lap pool divided from the spa with 'floating' stone steps across to the pool deck. The minimal grade transition at the pool terrace required no railing for an unbroken view while swimming. An orchard and solar panel array occupy the lowest portion of the site. 

Photography by Dana Miller


Project Name Calle Bello
Program Terraced hillside backyard with guest house and swimming pool
Location Santa Barbara, California
Year 2010
Size 10,000sf Terraces, steps and Landscaping, 800sf Guest House
Collaborators Contractor: Don Gragg, SB Design and Build