Mill Valley, CA
Diego Pacheco Design Practice
Case Study: Modernizing a 1940 Spanish Mediterranean Home
With years of experience as a veteran building construction manager, Barb Chambers was ready to pour her professional knowledge into a personal project: her new residence. She found her challenge with a 1940 Mediterranean Spanish-styled home that had stayed unchanged for nearly 75 years. It was a great foundation with a tasteful exterior, but the interior needed to be modernized in a significant way. The old layout of the home left the inside dark and closed off by an excessive number of small divided rooms.
Architect Diego Pacheco was recruited to reconfigure the residence into one with a more open and bright interior, while maintaining the style of its origins. To create a more spacious area and bring light into the house, Pacheco’s solution was to implement an open floor plan that would feature multi-functional rooms and glass installations.
The overall aesthetic benefitted greatly from these functional changes, which were in part possible due to a well-placed NanaWall system.
Creating Space and Blending Room Purpose
Pacheco removed walls to unify the interior public space into one room and used the SL60 aluminum framed folding glass wall to extend that unified space to the outside area.
The homeowners wanted a place to entertain and an outdoor eating option. Pacheco positioned the dining room at the rear of the house and was able to blend the functions of the dining room and outdoor area together by incorporating the two with a NanaWall system. The homeowners now have the option to eat inside, with the glass wall closed, or practically outside, with the wall open.
“With the opening glass wall, there is no need for double rooms. The interior dining room serves both functions.”
The home’s aesthetic was positively impacted by the decision to put the NanaWall system near the backend of the interior. With the opening glass panels at the rear of the home, “the drama is way more impactful aesthetically and visually by having the room flow outdoors, even when the folding wall is closed.”
Brightening the Room and Making Outdoors Accessible
Standing at 7’10” tall and spreading 13’1” wide, this four-panel system covers a significant section of the home’s exterior with glass. Whether opened or closed, the glass folding system allows an abundance of sunlight into the home, which was one of Pacheco’s primary goals.
When the panels are fully opened there is a large entryway into the backyard that welcomes guests into the yard. And when the system isn’t fully opened and the homeowners need to go outside, they can simply use the swing door that is incorporated into the formation of their 3L1R system.
While the homeowners did price shop, they ultimately realized that a NanaWall system best suited their needs and was a higher value and better performing product. They flirted with the idea of using traditional sliders, however, a traditional slider wouldn’t open up the house the same way a fully opening system would and the homeowners recognized that once they visited the NanaWall showroom in Emeryville.
“The homeowners were familiar with NanaWall systems and discovered through due diligence that NanaWall product was not much more [money]. For future resale value, they decided to go with a real NanaWall.”
The family now enjoys an indoor/outdoor lifestyle that is only made possible by the openness, maneuverability, and aesthetic of the SL60.