Designing a home is a very personal and exciting process. I take the time to get to know you and your family better; how you plan your meals, if you entertain, if you have kids, what is the morning routine, etc. By better understanding your lifestyle I can help you craft a home that will enhance your living and organize your spaces to better serve.
Not all Architects design homes. Just as some Doctors specialize in certain areas so do Architects. Since 2001, I have shifted my focus to residential architecture. By studying the “masters” like Frank Llyod Wright, Lou Khan, Carlo Scarpa, among others - I have been able to better understand houses and their role in people’s lives. For me a home is best when it is at the service of the people who inhabit the space. At the same time, it should fit within the context of its surroundings and contribute to the fabric of the neighborhood.
All of this helps me as an Architect, guide new home owners in the design development of their future home. I call this “meaningful architecture”.
Beach House Observation Tower
Inspired by the history of Galveston Island and its rich Victorian Style heritage - Architect Milosav Cekic and I were able to design a once in a lifetime beach house.
Beach House Front Elevation
Same beach house on Galveston Island. Architect Milosav Cekic, my mentor, and I worked on the design of this incredible house for over a year. Here it is (on the left) next to another great beach house by Architect Michale Imber.
Dune Walk and Night Scene
We worked closely with a lighting consultant to achieve a dramatic effect for the Beach House on Galveston Island. The Dune Walk in front is just a short walk to the Gulf.
Texas Hill Country Modern
Worked with Custom Home Builder, Nick Hoch, on the plans for a multi-level contemporary condo in an upscale North Austin neighborhood. This was a narrow lot, that dropped dramatically to the rear creating a split-level design opportunity. We were restricted by the HOA with a small palate of exterior materials.
Same spec home with an enclosed Courtyard Entry. We wanted to incorporate rustic wood (columns, ceiling) with the sandstone look and gravel pathway.
Modern Farmhouse in East Austin
Working again with Home Builder, Nick Hoch, and Realator, Richard Olesch, we design a new home for a lot in an older East Austin neighborhood. We wanted to create a contemporary look without being ultra modern as many of the other houses in the area were more ranch style homes.
I have a separate practice for small to medium size commercial projects that have a residential componet (i.e., condos, lofts, small mixed use retail/residential). Please visit this website for more information.
Urban South Mixed Use - Austin, Texas
Mixed Use Development - Retail and Residential
Remodels & Additions
Thinking of remodeling your home? Converting that Garage into a Game Room or adding a Guest House? I have been fortunate to have led the design effort for private clients on more than 100 remodeling projects since 1999. One of my very first projects was a Pool House for a client located in the Zilker Park neighborhood.
As an Architect and Interior Designer, I have extensive experience guiding clients through the design process and assisting them with applying for the construction permits. I can also help clients better understand the site development and construction budget constraints, before wasting time with a scope of work that may or may not be feasible.
I believe what we bring to the table are design ideas and creative solutions to building problems. It is my passion to stay on top of the latest design trends, coolest gadgets, and building product improvements. All of this knowledge enables me, help you better design your home for today’s living.
Upscale Master Bath Spa
Contemporary palate of wood veneers, stone counter top, and large porcelain tiles. Use of lighter paint color scheme to blend with tile and soaker tub.
Shower Wall & Niche
Kolar’s “Devonshire” line chosen for gentle curves. Satin nickle selected to add brightness to the scheme without overwhelming sparkle. Niche tile selected to compliment shower floor. Natural light to bring in the outdoors.
Darker cabinets to contrast stone pattern counter top. Stainless steel cook-top (gas burners) with raised vent hood. Light colored tile back splash and horizontal siding along wall between Kitchen and Dining areas to expand the view and draw the eye.
Dining Area & Outdoor Patio
Vaulted ceiling and full height windows surround the Dining Room area to connect the interior and exterior. Large patio slider doors to between Family Room and Patio with outdoor fire place and overlooking wood deck.
Modern Farmhouse for a Small Kitchen
Light colored counter top and off white cabinets contrast the darker wood flooring. Decorative pendant lighting over the Kitchen Island and contemporary bar stools.
Smart Storage for a Guest Bath
Frameless glass enclosure next to built-in shelving (backs up to storage closet) and a three spread faucet for the Vanity. Mirror doubles as a medicine cabinet.
If you don't "plan" to succeed, you may end up failing
I’m often asked what an Architect brings to the table versus a drafts-person. For one, experience with building codes, familiarity with construction standards, and a thorough system of documentation that enables the actual construction phase to move towards completion with fewer delays.
Here are some examples of the type of drawings that I feel are essential to any new custom home project. I do all my drawings in 3D BIM (Building Information Modeling) software that is the standard CAD software for some of the top architectural firms in the world. I have a reputation as a CAD Guru for good reason and I bring this to bear on even the smallest remodels at no additional costs. For me, having the Owner visualize the design instead of interpreting complex 2D drawings helps with “buy in” and manages the expectations.
The Design Process
“Programming IS analysis. Design IS synthesis.” - William Pena FAIA
If you have already worked with a builder or architect, this process may be familiar to you. However, if you have not, it has been our experience that the more successful projects have a series of calculated “steps” that begin with the initial meeting and follow through to job completion.
Step 1 - Project Evaluation & Preliminary Design:
Before we can begin, it is important to meet with you about your goals and talk about how we would handle your project. This initial meeting is free and usually takes between 30 minutes to an hour. This is a no obligation opportunity for you to interview us and see how we work. Within 1-2 days, Pablo will send you an proposal for Architectural Services based upon the Scope of Work discussed. This initial Agreement is for the Planning and Budget Development only and not the final construction drawings.
This set, more accurately called the “Preliminary Design” will be sufficiently drawn to scale with an outline of the proposed level of materials and quantity of new fixtures planned. A competent Builder can then use these drawings to distribute to his group of trades and give a Cost Estimate after walking through the project with the Architect.
After meeting with 2-3 Builders, the Owner will have a better idea of the probable cost of construction. Pablo will then issue an amendment to the original Agreement to complete the architectural services based on the final scope of work. It may mean that some of the scope of work is reduced, deleted, or altered to meet the project budget.
Once the Owner has signed the amendment, work on the next phase of services can begin. The goal of this phase is to develop the schematic level drawings into working construction drawings, complete with structural details, calculations, and fixture schedules. The Architect may consult with specialist, such as Surveyors, Septic Engineers, and Structural Engineers to detail the drawings so that an accurate bid can be derived. Not all projects require these professionals, however, when adding to an older structure or building over clay soils, these professionals will ensure that the proper construction is considered.
At the end of this phase, the Architect will assist the Owner with applying for the required permits and distribute the final construction documents to the builders for bidding. The Architect will also assist the Owner with qualifying the Builders, asking questions and responding to request for information on behalf of the Owner.
Step 3 – Construction Phase Observation Services:
Once the Owner has signed a Contract for Construction, the Architect will meet with the Builder prior to the start of construction to review the construction schedule, protocols for substitutions/shop drawing review, and pay applications. The Architect will represent the Owner throughout the construction phase, making Field Reports, reviewing the progress of construction for compliance with the Design Intent shown on the construction documents.
As issues come up during construction, the Architect will lead the effort to resolve any problems, issuing Supplemental Drawings, meeting with City Inspectors, and other trade specialist (i.e., Decorators).