Born Again


Captain Renaud said to Rick in Casablanca: "You shouldn't throw away women like that, Rick; some day they may be scarce." We feel that way about modernist houses, and whine a lot when they are taken down because they don't have a separate dining room or ensuite for every bedroom. An owner who cares can renovate or add on. That's what Tom Lloyd-Butler did to Architect Ernest Born's 1949 house in San Francisco. According to Pilar Vidalas in the New York Times, he loved the house exactly as it was — essentially unchanged since Born built it. "Tom wanted a minimal intervention in the existing house," says Joshua Aidlin, who designed the addition with David Darling and Michael Hennessey.

So they built an addition as a separate structure, connected to the original by a glass bridge.


"The 1,850-square-foot addition contains a rec room with surfboard storage (this is a family of avid surfers) on the first floor, a master bedroom and bath on the second and a family-media room on the third; each floor is open-plan to maximize light and views."


While an 1850 square foot addition isn't small, the owner is a hedge fund manager and they build pool cabanas that size. The author says "one of the best things about the new building is that it — like the original house — occupies so little of that outdoors, wisely diverging from the current bigger-is-better approach to house design and reminding us that small is indeed beautiful." ::New York Times

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