Our Inwood House of the Week at 4311 Middleton Road is what the architect, Mark Domiteaux of Domiteaux + Baggett, calls a contemporary midcentury modern. It combines the classic elements of midcentury modern style with cutting-edge green features, resulting in one of the most timeless homes we’ve ever seen.
It’s hard to believe this home was built 10 years ago as a custom home for film industry executive Bill Banowsky.
“Bill had grown up in Malibu Canyon in California,” Domiteaux said. He wanted that cool California aesthetic with a lot of natural materials, exposed beams and very green, so I ran with that.” Banowsky was ready, willing, and able to do green when a lot of people were not, so basically an architect’s dream client.
We created a butterfly roof, Domiteaux said. “Everything slopes to the middle of the house for water collection and it drains off to scuppers that take the water to a cistern. It’s then used as water for the landscape.”
Domiteaux wrapped the exterior in wood siding and Arkansas blue stone, going to three different quarries to get the patterns and textures he wanted. “
The front of the home was designed to be subtle. “I’m most pleased with the material use, and the low-slung, very unassuming façade,” Domiteaux said. “It’s all a big surprise and a reveal when you walk through the house.”
As you walk up to the front door, you’ll see the ends of the support beams jutting out dramatically. The structure that holds the roof up was exposed, so that is what you see when you enter. “They are kind of celebratory,” Domiteaux said. “It leads you into knowing the house will be about geometry.”
One of the first things you encounter is what appears to be a long, linear fireplace in the entry. It’s essentially a central house cooling system. Remember attic fans? Open up the windows and doors, turn on the fan and fresh air fills the home.
All of the exposed wood in the house is Douglas fir. The cabinet work and paneling are a bamboo veneer.
The original countertops were created with a sustainable product called PaperStone, a laminated recycled paper and one of the most environmentally responsible products on the market.
The American Institute of Architects in Dallas chose the contemporary midcentury modern for their 2009 AIA Tour. As happens when homes change ownership, new needs must be met. We’re happy to report that the new owner had the great foresight to call on Domiteaux when he wanted to add his stamp so we would not be surprised to see this home selected for another tour sometime soon.
The great room was expanded, and a Studio F.A. Porsche Poggenpohl kitchen integrated into the layout with high-end appliances. During the process, Domiteaux did not want to lose any light so when the new owner requested a fireplace in the formal living room he turned a sliding glass door into a window and built in a fireplace.
Although you might get the impression from the sizable cool factor that this is a modern bachelor pad, the house was built for a family. Both the original owner and the present owner have children. There are 3,647 square feet, four bedrooms, three bathrooms, and a powder bath. The children’s wing is at one end and the master suite at the other end of the house. Brilliant.
The home was also created with a great deal of thought about family enjoyment and entertaining.
“The main room works so well with the outside,” Domiteaux said. “It compels people to open the doors and go outside.” Every room has a sliding glass door to the backyard and pool area.
David Griffin and Company Realtor Janelle Alcantara listed the home a few days ago for $1.895 million.
“The property itself is really magnificent,” Alcantara said. “The really interesting thing about the house is how well it blends ultra-modern with very warm finishes. It feels like it was built yesterday, but has a quality and stature that says it’s been there a long time.”
That’s what Domiteaux was after — a timeless, sustainable home that is warm and inviting. This a rare find, so be sure to make a note of both the upcoming houses. These one-of-a-kind homes don’t last long.
Agent Open House Tuesday, June 6, 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Karen Eubank is the owner of Eubank Staging and Design. She has been an award-winning professional home stager for more than 25 years. She’s been a professional writer for 20 years. Karen is the mother of a son who’s studying music at The University of Miami. An ardent animal lover, she doesn’t mind one bit if your fur baby jumps right into her lap. Find Karen at www.eubankstaging.com