MDa Redefines Wine Country Living With This Idyllic Barn Retreat

MDa Redefines Wine Country Living With This Idyllic Barn Retreat

Embracing the region’s rustic charm, the firm’s newest commission seamlessly blends nature with modern living

Curated by Aline Chahine | 
April 25, 2024
| Est. Reading: 3 minutes
Project Details:
Address: Healdsburg
Year: N/A
Area: N/A

Nestled into the heart of Northern California Wine Country, this captivating new addition to the landscape by esteemed San Francisco architectural firm, Malcolm Davis Architecture (MDa), is a testament to modern architecture’s ability to blend harmoniously with nature. Known as the Wine Country Barn, the unique building is the result of a close collaboration between Mda and loyal clients who sought to enhance their weekend home.

MDa Redefines Wine Country Living With This Idyllic Barn Retreat
View of the Wine Country Barn from the approach. In addition to being a sanctuary for relaxation and entertainment, it also incorporates a covered parking spot. Photo: Joe Fletcher

The journey began when the homeowners envisioned improvements to their communal living space for weekends with family and friends. Initially contemplating a large addition to the original house, their evolving desires led to the creation of an entirely separate entertainment barn and guest house addition. MDa's architectural design drew inspiration from the region's rustic barns, while incorporating modern detailing to ensure that the new structure harmonizes with its surroundings.

MDa Redefines Wine Country Living With This Idyllic Barn Retreat
The adjoining tree swing adds a touch of playfulness in line with the outdoor bliss that the project represents. Photo: Joe Fletcher

In order to fully integrate the structure into the existing property and estate, MDa worked alongside landscape design team, Lucas & Lucas, with the goal of knitting the building, which features a guest suite, covered parking, and an outdoor kitchen and living space, into the lush surroundings. The result is a design that unites the existing house and pool with the new barn, resulting in a cohesive wine country complex defined by exquisite landscaping and purposeful site lines.

MDa Redefines Wine Country Living With This Idyllic Barn Retreat
Locally harvested redwood siding ensures that the barn's volumes create a dialogue, not only with the natural surroundings, but also the local history. Photo: Joe Fletcher

MDa's design strategy incorporated locally harvested redwood siding, paying homage to the region's mill town history. A harmonious blend of timber, shapes, and volumes further speaks to the local vernacular and seamlessly fits within the picturesque environment. From a sustainability perspective, the team utilized timeless passive techniques that emphasize the use of natural elements for comfort and minimized mechanical and electrical interventions. This environmentally conscious approach ensures that the barn complements the natural climate of the region, contributing to energy efficiency. The interior design, meticulously curated by Grant Gibson Interior Design, also adhered to the concept of timelessness.

MDa Redefines Wine Country Living With This Idyllic Barn Retreat
Photo: Joe Fletcher

MDa drew on the forms of the gable roof barns found in the regional and added distinct modern detailing to create the ultimate outdoor kitchen and entertainment area. Roofing contractors used locally harvested redwood siding, adding to the barn's rustic charm.

MDa Redefines Wine Country Living With This Idyllic Barn Retreat
MDa worked closely with Lucas & Lucas Landscape Architecture to carefully align the new building and landscape elements on the existing pool grid, anchoring it to the site and marrying the existing house, pool, and new structure in a more purposeful manner. Photo: Joe Fletcher

The project represents the second collaboration between the design-forward homeowners and MDa, who previously designed their San Francisco residence. Contrasting the urban cityscape environment of their primary residence, the Wine Country Barn offers them a necessary reprieve where they can spend more time outdoors, basking in the region's warmth and serene rural setting.


Architecture: Malcolm Davis Architecture  
Landscape Architect: Lucas & Lucas  
Contractor: Bettega Construction  
Furniture: Grant Gibson Interior Design 
Photography: Joe Fletcher 

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