located in sonoma county, california, the triple barn house was designed by mork-ulnes architects as a residential retreat for a chef and her husband. surrounded by nature but not far from town, the house is both a quiet getaway for the couple and a cooking laboratory — a place designed for gatherings that would create a new relationship with the surrounding environment. taking influence from the chef’s philosophy together with the rural building typology typical of the area, the architects used metal cladding reminiscent of the iron-red rusty soil indigenous to the site and relied on by local suppliers, builders, and cabinet makers.

mork ulnes triple barn
all images by bruce damonte



mork-ulnes architects situated the 1,750 square foot home along a steep hillside overlooking panoramic views stretching from the sonoma valley to marin county. upon approach, the visitor sees a triple roofed rusted steel profile emerging over natural grasses and iron-red soil. guests are the guided to the front door through the large concrete void. organized with an open floor plan, the interior and its furnishings were designed to provide the residents with many small private nooks. the most dominant materials of the house are expressed on the exterior, where corten steel references the building’s rural context and rough concrete at the base accentuates the agricultural nature of the setting.

mork ulnes triple barn



in contrast, the interior was meant to have simple and bright materials to give the house a casual atmosphere. all walls were kept white to keep the space bright and allow for the large windows to captivate with their views. the plan of the upper floor responds to the triple roof form of the house: one roof houses the public area of the kitchen and dining area as well as the outdoor kitchen and lounge, one roof contains the more private zone of the guest rooms and living room, and the third roof houses the private zone of the master suite. the lower concrete level contains the entry room and stair, laundry and storage room, and triangular office.

mork ulnes triple barn mork ulnes triple barn mork ulnes triple barn

mork ulnes triple barn

mork ulnes triple barn mork ulnes triple barn mork ulnes triple barn mork ulnes triple barn mork ulnes triple barn mork ulnes triple barn



project info:


project title: triple barn house

architecture: mork-ulnes architects

location: sonoma, california

photography: bruce damonte