Puget Sound House Tacoma, Washington, USA Designed 1983 Landscape by Cornelia Oberlander Located on a 300-acre extended family farmstead, the 8000-square foot house serves as a residence for a couple, their visiting children, relatives and business guests. The house, a series of radiating pavilions grouped around a central east- facing courtyard interconnected by stairs, ramps, and terraces, is perched in an Acropolis-like manner on the edge of a treed bluff overlooking a bay towards the majestic Mount Rainier in the east. The design solution responds to the rural American farm setting by creating vernacular sheds and outbuildings with hip and vaulted roof shapes, porticos, porches and greenhouses. These varied elements are expressed through the use of rustic materials. The walls of the primarily wood frame structure are clad with dry-packed Alta granite or diagonal cedar boards, which are also used as roof cladding. The entry and dining pavilion roofs and greenhouse portico are copper clad. Following a winding woodland drive, the approach to the house is from the west through a steeple roofed entry pavilion. A generous entry lobby is the pivot point for the other pavilions but is primarily integral with the major entertainment spaces - the living and dining rooms. The living room incorporates ramps that link the upper levels of the house to the lower levels which contain guest suites, a recreation room, gym, and mechanical rooms. The eighteen-foot high vaulted cedar wood ceiling captures a clear view of the towering trees through a colonnade portico. The formal dining room, which seats twelve, looks west through a contoured valley of wild flowers and grasses over a pond to distant views of undulated fields and grazing Arabian horses. The master bedroom to the southwest opens into a grassy mound of flowering rhododendrons in the forest. The dressing and bath area extends out into an enclosed private garden. The kitchen, utility, and greenhouse work areas link the garage pavilion with the other pavilions. The breakfast area on the east side of the kitchen commands a spectacular view across the fragrantly flowering terrace, where the reflecting pool appears to be blending with the distant water of the bay. Landscaping consists of carefully pruned existing growth augmented with native planting, such as rhododendrons, vine maples, and a variety of ground covers including ferns, wild strawberry, wild flowers and grasses and an impressive collection of species plants.