Home of the Year 2010
Kyle Webb and Cindy Rinfret team up to create a fresh take on high-country design in the mountains of Vail, Colorado
In this 10,000-square-foot home tucked into the mountains in Vail, soaring ceilings, big, bold lighting and breathtaking views add drama and glamour to the relaxed, artfully designed spaces. Interior designer Cindy Rinfret of Greenwich, Conn.-based Rinfret, Ltd. collaborated with architect Kyle Webb of K.H. Webb Architects in Vail on this seven-bedroom, nine-bathroom slopeside retreat, making Mountain Living’s 2010 Home of the Year a stately mix of rustic luxury and mountain-modern style.
Mountain Living: Tell us about your goals for this project. The result is such a fresh look—not your typical mountain home.
Kyle Webb: The homeowners bought this property with an existing house on it; it was one of the original houses in Vail, built in 1962. The goal, initially, was to renovate the home and reuse as much as we could. But when we got into it, we realized we just couldn’t accomplish what they wanted. At that point, we were working based on the floor plan of the existing house, which we ended up tearing down. So the floor plan of the entry hall and the living room of this house is actually the plan from the old house. We moved the new house a bit—rotating it so we could get better views—but it has a bit of memory of the original house.
ML: How nice to have that nod to history.
KW: This was the homeowners’ first foray into contemporary design, and they didn’t want to go too far with it. I think a little bit of Craftsman flair, which is rooted in Asian influences, was comfortable for them to consider.
Cindy Rinfret: As you get a little bit older, you want your home to be more streamlined, a bit less fussy. This house is really the epitome of who the homeowners are at this point. It truly reflects them, their lifestyle and their casual elegance.
ML: The home has a lot of polish, but it’s also very approachable. How did you keep the designed spaces feeling intimate?
CR: A lot of it has to do with scale. In this house, it was a little bit more difficult to deal with the scale of things, like the spectacular drama of the entry hall. I believe it’s something like 11 or 12 feet wide and 42 feet high, which makes it challenging to create that intimate feel.
We spent a lot of time finding light fixtures that were the right scale and the right proportion and that made some of these spaces a little less grand. The homeowners wanted views, so they had these long, beautiful windows, but you still want the rooms to feel cozy. I think the lighting plays a large part in that.
ML: We want to hear all about those gorgeous light fixtures. There’s a harmony to the collection, but each one is so distinctive.
CR: It was quite a challenge to find light fixtures that were as unique as the house. For instance, I would never have thought of bringing crystal into this house at all, but the rock-crystal chandelier in the living room was kind of the stepping stone for the whole house. When I saw it, it looked like icicles that had fallen off of a ledge. They’re big and chunky, and the scale is very bold. You wouldn’t think of mixing rusted iron with rock crystal, but the gutsiness of that is what this house is all about
ML: Speaking of gutsiness, tell us about that amazing bed in the master bedroom.
CR: Those are actual birch trees. The trees were trimmed inside the room so that they reach right up to the peak of the ceiling. Literally, a guy was in there with a chainsaw cutting the tops of them to fit the room. How often does that happen, right?
ML: It should happen more often if you end up with dramatic results like that. But what about the drama outside: How did you design the home to measure up to those magnificent mountain views?
KW: We played with the form and added grandiose transitions to it. You enter into great spaces, but as you transition out of those spaces, the scale comes down. The dining room, for example, which is cantilevered off the north side of the house, is a glass room that has an intimate scale of its own.
CR: And the color scheme is sort of inside-outside. Because of the views and the way Kyle sited the house on the property, we wanted it to feel like there was a unity between the “organicness” outside and the inside of the house. I think Kyle did that very well with the materials palette—the stone, the beams and the wood. When you have really great architecture, you don’t have to over-gild it.
THE BEAUTY OF HANDCRAFTED DETAILS
Custom-designed and handmade fixtures and furnishings are the ultimate luxury, and the 2010 Home of the Year is full of such one-of-a-kind touches. Here are a few of the design team’s favorite things.
Architect Kyle Webb
CUSTOM FRONT DOOR by K.H. Webb Architects, Vail, Colo. “It’s made of walnut with zinc panels near the glass. The sense of arrival that front door creates couldn’t have been better.”
EXTERIOR ENTRY LIGHTS by Ironstone Lighting, Eagle, Colo., 970-328-1592. “When you arrive in the evening, this whole entry is glowing and it’s just majestic.
Interior Designer Cindy Rinfret
CUSTOM ROCK-CRYSTAL CHANDELIER by HB Home of Greenwich, Conn. “It’s gutsy, it’s unique, and the scale of it is outrageous.”
CUSTOM BIRCH-TREE BED by Rustic Furniture of Willow Creek, Mont. “It feels so natural in this house without being corny—and it could have gone either way.
ENTRY HALL TABLE by Burgess Fine Woodworking of Eagle, Colo., and Mark Ditzler Glass Studio of Seattle, Wash. “I saw a similar table online and loved it, so I asked a local craftsman to reinterpret it for me.”
BAR TOP by Burgess Fine Woodworking of Eagle, Colo. “This bar is unbelievable. I love that the wood looks so natural.”
ARCHITECTURE K.H. Webb Architects, Vail, CO, 970-477-2990, khwebb.com INTERIOR DESIGN Rinfret Ltd., Greenwich, CT, 203-622-0000, rinfretltd.com DAUGHTER’S BEDROOM WALLS & CEILING Custom plaster similar to Benjamin Moore #2137-50 “Sea Haze”, benjaminmoore.com TRIM Stained walnut wood CARPET “Matrix-Water” #04 by Crescent from AT Proudian, atproudian.com WINDOW TREATMENT Off-white felt panels with cutout from Mis En Scene, misenscenegreenwich.com HARDWARE Ava Design, avadesign.com BED Custom king bed designed by local artisan HEADBOARD FABRIC “Chou-Chou” by Dedar, dedar-usa.com PILLOW FABRIC “Orissi-Flax” and “Ettori-Alpine” by Romo, romo.com SIDE TABLES Mirrored “Eva” side table by Oly, olystudio.com CHANDELIER “Conti” chandelier from Arteriors Home, arteriorshome.com SOFA Custom sofa with nickel-head trim, designed by Rinfret Ltd. and manufactured by local artisan SOFA FABRIC “Plain Jane-Sea Mist” by Beacon Hill Fabrics, beaconhilldesign.com CUSHION FABRIC “Iguazu-Glacier” with welt in “Plain Jane-Sea Mist” by Beacon Hill Fabrics, beaconhilldesign.com OCCASIONAL TABLE “Meri” pierced resin side table by Oly, olystudio.com WALL SCONCE “Grayson” candle walls conce by Oly, olystudio.com SIDE CHAIRS Custom lacquered chairs with nickel nail heads made by local artisan in “Dou-Dou” fabric by Dedar, dedar-usa.com CABINET Two-door “Visoconti” storage cabinet from Bungalow 5, bungalow5.com LAMP “Tripod sg” lamp from Worlds Away, worlds-away.com CARPET “Matrix-Water” #04 by Crescent from AT Proudian, atproudian.com BREAKFAST ROOM DINING TABLE Custom 60” square table from Mark Gravino, gravinofurniture.com BENCHES “Banquette Velin Bench” by Christian Liagre from Holly Hunt, hollyhunt.com BENCH FABRIC “Brissa Distressed-Butterscotch” #51103 by F. Schumacher from Holly Hunt, hollyhunt.com LIGHTING “Atlas” light fixture from Holly Hunt, hollyhunt.com RUG Custom area rug from Michaelian & Kohlberg, michaelian.com WINDOW TREATMENT FABRIC “Bolero” Sheer from Zimmer & Rohde, zimmer-rohde.com KITCHEN LANTERNS “Cubic” lanterns (over island) from Holly Hunt, hollyhunt.com STOOLS “Grid” swivel counter stools from Berman Rosetti (bermanrosetti.com) in faux-leather “Promessa-Bronze” from F. Schumacher, fschumacher.com RUG Custom area rug from Michaelian & Kohlberg, michaelian.com WINDOW TREATMENTS Roman shade fabric, “Calypso-Linen/Brown/Gold” from Lee Jofa, leejofa.com; roman shade bead trim from Kravet, kravet.com; upholstered cornice in faux-crocodile fabric from Kravet, kravet.com ENTRY BENCHES “Guileless Bench” from Berman Rosetti (bermanrosetti.com) with custom seat cushions in fabrics by F. Schumacher, fschumacher.com CHANDELIER Custom hand-forged-iron “Vos” chandelier from Dessin Fournir, dessinfournir.com WALL SCONCES from Hammerton, hammerton.com RUG Custom area rug from Michaelian & Kohlberg, michaelian.com MASTER BEDROOM BED Custom king-size “Birch Tree” Bed from Rustic Furniture, rusticfurniture.com HEADBOARD FABRIC “Canton Velvet-Jade” from Larsen, larsen.com PILLOWS Custom European bed pillows in “Lilypad Silk-Jade/Gold” by Mulberry from Lee Jofa, leejofa.com; welting in “Buckskin-Spruce” from Pindler & Pindler, pindler.com BED SKIRT “Bamboo-Twill” from Zimmer & Rohde, zimmer-rohde.com BEDSIDE TABLES “Jackson” table from Oly, olystudio.com RUG Custom area rug from Michaelian & Kohlberg, michaelian.com MASTER BATHROOM CURTAINS “Shimmering Aspen-Golden Bark” from Calvin Fabrics, calvinfabrics.com TUB Purchased by client; vendor unknown, please ask architect LIGHTING NEAR TUB “Sorenson” lantern from Remains Lighting, remains.com LIGHTING NEAR SHOWER Custom “New Growth” fixture from CP Lighting, cplighting.com LIVING ROOM CHANDELIER Custom “Rock Crystal Nugget” chandelier from Holly Hunt, hollyhunt.com SOFA “Tigertail” from Berman Rosetti in saddle leather outside and mohair inside with dark wood base, bermanrosetti.com SOFA FABRIC “Cinema-Koala” from Larsen, larsen.com SOFA LEATHER from Edelman Leather, edelmanleather.com SOFA PILLOWS Custom with geometric appliqué CLUB CHAIRS “Paramount” chairs from Vanguard, vanguardfurniture.com; ribbed chenille fabric from Kravet, kravet.com WING CHAIRS “Albert” chairs from Vanguard, vanguard.com; fabric from F. Schumacher, fschumacher.com COFFEE TABLE “Carved Coffee Table” END TABLES from Global Views, globalviews.com BENCH from Global Views, globalviews.com; in “Ruhlmann Velvet” from F. Schumacher, fschumacher.com MIRROR “Twig” mirror from Holly Hunt, hollyhunt.com DINING TABLE Custom 60” square table from Mark Gravino, gravinofurniture.com BENCHES “Banquette Velin Bench” by Christian Liagre from Holly Hunt, hollyhunt.com BENCH FABRIC “Brissa Distressed-Butterscotch” #51103 by F. Schumacher from Holly Hunt, hollyhunt.com LIGHTING “Atlas” light fixture from Holly Hunt, hollyhunt.com RUG Custom area rug from Michaelian & Kohlberg, michaelian.com WINDOW TREATMENT FABRIC “Bolero” Sheer from Zimmer & Rohde, zimmer-rohde.com