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Rainbow House in Santa Monica

Contemporary Californian Residential Building design by MINARC architects

Oct 23, 2016

Location: Santa Monica, Southern California, USA

Architects: MINARC

Rainbow House completes all the R’s: re-purposed, re-used, re-cycled. This 5-unit apartment building was converted to a single-family residence by remodeling less than 50% of the existing structure. This simple eco-conscious design is focused on functionality and creating a healthy breathing family environment.

Rainbow House in Santa Monica

Rainbow House

The design elements are oriented to take optimum advantage of natural light and cross ventilation, maximum use of natural light to cut down electrical cost, and a conscious effort in using only materials in their most organic form.

The interior/exterior courtyard allows for natural ventilation as do the master sliding window and living room sliders. Light reflects off the glass railings bathing the house in rainbows.

Rainbow House in Santa Monica Rainbow House in Santa Monica

Solar thermal radiant floor heating and domestic water heating is found throughout the house while a heated patio and fireplace for outdoor dining maximizes indoor/outdoor living. No paint, no tile, no carpet, no forced air (AC/HV) was used in the building of Rainbow House.

Floor material connects in an unobtrusive and whimsical manner to increase floor plan flow and space. The courtyard veranda and hammock chairs off the playroom further connects the indoors and outdoors.

Rainbow House in Santa Monica

The design and use of color inspired by the dramatic landscape creates a contrasting and stimulating interior. The recycled wood kitchen island creates a multi-functional gathering point in the heart of the house. The orange back splash (volcanic), the blue (recycled glass) under the staircase (waterfall) combines elements of strength and infinity. The use of black rubber/cork for the face of the cabinets (lava) creates a visual contrast. The steel windowsill in the front room (guest, yoga, office) creates an additional seating area with magnetic cushions that can be re-arranged as needed while magnetic hooks holds a curtain in place for privacy when guests occupy the space.

The entire house uses recycled and reclaimed materials. Wood beams in the courtyard atrium are salvaged from the original structure. Inexpensive recycled rubber material was used for the bathroom sinks and chosen for its great sustainability. Material manufactured from recycled tires and cork were used on the kitchen cabinetry and kitchen chairs, creating an elegant kitchen unaffected by normal wear and tear of family life.

Rainbow House in Santa Monica

The “disappearing” kitchen chairs are easily stored under the island to maximize the use of space. The upstairs bookshelf functions as railings/barriers between floor plans and evokes the ocean by using blue panelite.

Magnetic chalkboard sliders in the play area and paperboard sliders in the kids’ rooms transform the house into a medium for children’s artistic expression. The console behind the master bed echoes the kitchen island and dining room table while providing storage for the wardrobe.

Rainbow House in Santa Monica

90% of the furnishings and carpets are re-used (bought off Craigslist). The tree in front of the house was salvaged from the backyard during construction. Shoe storage drawers beneath the coat closet double as a bench for changing shoes.

Rainbow House in Santa Monica

Our green practices and selection of sustainable products do not raise the cost of the house, but instead increase its value. We believe that building repurposed and recycled shouldn’t be more expensive for our clients.

Rainbow House in Santa Monica images / information from MINARC

Location: Santa Monica, Southern California, United States of America

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