Emerging Trends in Mountain Residential Architecture

The design of mountain homes has gone through a significant transformation in the last 10 years, from the traditional mountain rustic to a more modern mountain expression. When it’s time to create your own high-country home, remember these components that help create a sophisticated mountain retreat.

Indoor-outdoor Living

Spectacular mountain settings call for indoor-outdoor living, including large sliding, pocketing or accordion door systems that open up interior spaces to outdoor patios, decks and covered outdoor rooms. Think of seating areas focused around outdoor fireplaces, TVs, pools and water features, as well as dining areas with built-in barbecues and outdoor kitchens; these typically have speakers, electric infrared heaters located in the ceiling, and well-designed lighting.

Floor-to-ceiling Window Walls

Large floor-to-ceiling, high-performance, low-e coated, triple-glazed window wall systems also help blur the separation between indoor and outdoor spaces, creating both a physical and psychological bridge to the natural world. These systems often utilize thermally broken steel windows and generous roof overhangs to shade summer sun while allowing winter sun to warm the interior.

Cleanly Detailed Natural Materials

Indigenous natural materials such as local stone on interior and exterior walls and floor, as well as cleanly detailed wood floors, ceiling and timbers, emotionally connect a home to its mountain context.

Industrial, Refined Design Elements

The large living spaces, open stairways, and floor-to-ceiling window walls often require steel structure to support roofs and floors. But instead of concealing them in wood, as was typically done in the past, modern homes detail and showcase the steel components to provide an industrial yet sophisticated modern aesthetic.


Hans Berglund is the owner of Berglund Architects, an Edwards, Colorado-based firm that specializes in custom residential and commercial design for the mountain environment. View the Berglund Architects profile or contact Hans Berglund at (970) 926-4301.


Content for this article provided by Berglund Architects.

Categories: Contemporary Homes