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Studio Schicketanz’s latest project celebrates land, sustainability, and power of architecture

As one of the Central Coast’s leading architecture and interior design firms, Studio Schicketanz is sought after for its sensitive approach to the landscape, sustainable architecture techniques, and sophisticated yet comfortable interiors.

For founder Mary Ann Schicketanz, AIA, Carmel, and the surrounding Big Sur and Monterey region, has been a source of endless inspiration since she first arrived from Austria more than 30 years ago. It has led to a career-long investigation into the relationship between landscape, building materials, form, and nature. She considers the natural beauty of the coastal region a muse—everything from its Cypress trees and dune grasses to the ever-present ocean—all of which define her signature palettes and materials.

“In our work, we seek to do justice to the land, our clients, and our own architectural ambitions,” says Schicketanz. The firm brings this ethos to its wide-ranging portfolio, no matter a project’s location. To date, their California work spans the entire coastline—from Laguna Beach to northern Marin—and they have also completed projects across the Western United States, everywhere from Hawaii to Texas, and Europe.

Located in Clint Eastwood’s coveted Carmel Valley Tehama community, this net zero residence celebrates the land, sustainability and the power of architecture to make us feel safe. The virgin site was a gentle sloping meadow, located at the edge of a mixed forest that features a signature — and compelling — oak tree.

Studio Schicketanz rebuilt the entire ocean frontage of this residence without increasing square footage for a client with a longstanding passion for the region’s natural beauty. By creating a terraced roof design to maximise views, the southern half of the residence now accommodates a master suite adjacent to a living, green roof. On both levels, the design’s prominent trellises filter light while giving foreground to the architecture. Inside, the home’s soft palettes are reflected in the delicate white oak floors and locally sourced stone that was hand-selected for the in-home, pizza oven.

Studio Schicketanz organised the design of this house around a central cleared knoll, prioritising outdoor space with a deep exploration for the ways a structure can merge with a specific ecology. Textured stone walls give rise to controlled cement steps that lead to a crisply modernist structure.


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