SPF:architects (SPF:a) has completed renovations on the Taylor Beach House, a 1977 home originally designed by noted California modernist Jerrold E. Lomax, FAIA (1927-2014). Located along the Malibu, CA coast, the Taylor Beach House is well appointed with 5,000 square feet of modern living space, 50 feet of beach frontage, and unobstructed ocean views from each floor.
SPF:a’s work focused on using advances in material technology to enhance the original modernist expressions laid out by Lomax that sought to maximize daylighting within. Thinner window frames were installed, as were high-performance glazing and glass floors. Similarly, a modest roof aperture was replaced with an operable skylight that stretches along the central axis to thoroughly illuminate the core of the residence. Ocean views, too, are afforded through the front-to-rear span of the floors thanks to judiciously positioned transparent walls and partitions and a reinvigorated plan.
Other significant modifications included the peeling back of plaster column covers to expose the steel structure within, and more notably, the installation of an architectural metal staircase with glass steps extending from the first floor to the third. An unlikely centerpiece, the brusque aluminum construction brings the home a combination of strength and delicacy, solidity and transparency.
Although the two-year renovation would see the home stripped down to its studs—every facet brought up to code, upgraded and modernized—the residence presents itself as a more lustrous, streamlined version of its former self.
“It was important to me that the renovation not compromise the ideals Jerry imbued; those being minimalism, functionalism, efficiency, and innovation,” says Zoltan E. Pali, FAIA, Design Principal at SPF:a. “The resulting transformation is certainly tangible, but this is still very much a Lomax house.”