Owl Creek Ski House is a project designed by Skylab. Perched on the hillside, with panoramic views of Snowmass Mountain, the Owl Creek residence was built on the idea that a physical place can deepen the connections between friends, families and the natural world. Photography by Robert Reck, Stephen Miller, Jeremy Bittermann.
The project vision included creating a collection of lodge-like communal spaces surrounded by naturally weathered and local materials providing an abundance of access to natural light, and min-imizing visual separation from the outdoors. This 4,500-square-foot, all-weather mountain retreat is about enhancing and recharging social relations and maximizing connections to the native environ-ment.
Site constraints were central to the design response and ultimately informing the spatial concept to triangulate the structure working with the existing sloping terrain. It turned the strict height limitation and slope constraints of the site into an advantage by anchoring the structure into the landforms. The structure frames powerful views through two principal façades, maximizing the visual connec-tion to the landscape at every angle. Strategic decisions in the frame and form allowed for efficien-cies and functional benefits, including a triangular structural steel frame with car decking to mini-mize costs through prefabrication, and a roof slope to move water and snow downslope. Finishes and interior relationships (featuring a palette with wood, stone, and weathering steel) were carefully crafted to draw the scenic landscape inward and extending the outdoor deck living experience. A central spiraling split-level arrangement allows for the living room, fireplace, bar and lounge to feel like intimate spaces with a communal energy. Terracing theater seating maximizes space within the stairwell working with the topography.
Compact and efficient private sleeping wings open to expansive outdoor views at the lower level. Exterior spaces open interior activity to the outdoors including a triangular spa with an elevated deck and an expansive outdoor terrace right off of the kitchen. The Owl Creek residence provides a platform to gather in a shared living environment connected to their surroundings with purpose, deepening family connections.
Skylab design team
Jeff Kovel, Design Director
Brent Grubb, Principal / Manager
Nathan Cox, Project Designer
Mark Nye, Project Manager
Joe Bashaw, Project Architect
Ben Porto, Visualization
Josh Ashcroft, Visualization
Interior designer: Studio Lambiotte, LLC.
Contractor: Ridge Runner Construction
Structural Engineer: Mountain Design Group
Mechanical Engineer: Resource Engineering Group and Architectural Engineering Consultants
Geotechnical and Soils Engineer: CTL Thompson Incorporated
Lighting: Lighting Workshop, Inc.
Theatrical/AV: Ambient Automation & Performance Electronics
Land use entitlements consultant: Manchester Architects