Mountain Ridge Views Pair With Elegant Uptown Design in Aspen’s West End

The homeowners had been “casually looking” for property for 15 years before they found this corner lot with views of Aspen Mountain
Aspen Ext

Photography by Gibeon Photography

Aspen, Colorado, has that je ne sais quoi quality that drew a homeowner and her family of six—which includes two golden retrievers—to its storybook setting to build the vacation getaway she had been dreaming about for decades. With its mix of single-family homes, months of fluffy snow perfect for skiing, and après-ski enjoyments like music festivals, luxury boutique shopping and world-class dining, the town seemed the idyllic setting for a family home. “My true love is Colorado,” she says about first falling in love with the state when she attended the University of Colorado. “It’s the best place to be.”

Aspen Dine

An Emanuel Morez chandelier over a custom Il Pezzo Mancante dining table produced in Florence, Italy, blends urban touches with the warmth of wood. Custom mountain-patterned fabric on armchairs echoes outside views of nearby Aspen Mountain.

With a dream to build from the ground up, she found a spacious corner lot with enough room to roam for her dogs that was within walking distance of the West End’s cultural amenities. She chose Scott Gillespie, principal of Sandbox, to design the residence. Having previously worked with him on a Lake Tahoe renovation, she trusted his workmanship. With his assistance through a comprehensive interview process, they added interior designer Sarah Jones and builder Brikor to the team and began the onerous undertaking of wading through Aspen’s extensive design review process.

Aspen Dogs

The homeowners have a love affair with golden retrievers. The two resident four-legged fur babies dutifully pose in front of the in/out access between the great room and outdoor living area.

“We built a mountain farmhouse with a touch of Napa Valley chic,” says Gillespie, who designed the comfortable family home with gable roofs, painted exterior finishes and white shiplap siding to fit in with the area’s historic homes and quaint residential feel. Numerous glass windows and doors capture direct views of Aspen Mountain and mature trees to drive home the mountain-town setting. Jones took the interiors in a different direction, creating an elegant, urban flair filled with black, white, brass and a few pops of color via artwork procured on multiple shopping trips with the homeowner. “This house reflects its homeowners,” Jones says. “The black, white and gold color palette was driven by the homeowner’s wardrobe. Tone-on-tone color adds depth despite a simplified color palette, while brass fixtures and lighting add brightness and warmth. Plus, the homeowner loves fuzzy and furry textiles such as the Stark rugs throughout the home for their coziness and livability.”

Aspen Living

Off the dining room, an open-concept great room takes in ample natural light. A glass antler chandelier with gold tips hangs above the space.

Above all, the homeowner asked for a tasteful and supremely practical mountain home that wasn’t “over the top or gaudy” and that delivered an elegant urban vibe. Jones provided glamour through brass and crystal chandelier “jewelry,” custom fabrics from San Francisco showrooms and marble countertops sourced directly from Italy. The design team added practicality by designing open family spaces and meeting the homeowner’s mandate that all family members’ bedrooms be located on the main level. “The rooms are functional but not huge,” says Jones. “Every bedroom has a chair for sitting. Beautiful high-end bed linens from Grande Maison are luxurious but machine washable.”

Aspen Kit

The kitchen’s countertops and backsplash feature Calacatta marble from Italy. The brass fixtures and finishes are the omnipresent “jewelry” in each room, including the Italian FontanaArte pinecone pendants.

It’s only downstairs in the lower level where the design tone changes, embracing a warm, rustic nod to Lake Tahoe via reclaimed wooden cabinetry in the media room and walk-in wine room/kitchenette. Strips of accent lighting offset windowless rooms with lower ceilings and low-profile furniture, ensuring the feel is cozy and comfortable.

Aspen Bed

A Currey & Company Forest chandelier overarches the textural coziness of Grande Maison bedding and a fuzzy Stark rug.

“The house has a great flow between the kitchen, dining room, great room and into the outdoors,” Gillespie says. “These common areas both inside and out are meant to be family gathering places. And the curb appeal just fits the context of the neighborhood.”

“Every time I get to town and drive up to it, I always want to walk in front of the house before going inside,” says the homeowner. “It touches on all we ever wanted—we’re in town with incredible views.”

Aspen Bath

“The homeowner chose the gold tub before we even broke ground on the house,” says designer Sarah Jones. Mountain sketch wallcovering from Area Environments and Waterworks hardware are the other stars in the primary bathroom.

Linking elegant urban interiors with a more rugged outdoor view can be design calisthenics. Interior designer Sarah Jones exercised her design muscles to achieve this unorthodox balance in the home’s design. Here are her tips on how to achieve the look:

WARM INTERIORS Touches of bling bring cool drama, but Jones warmed up interiors by integrating oak hardwood floors and rough-sawn wooden beams as a reminder of the mountains just outside. Even in the coolness of crystal lighting fixtures, the warmth of light shines through the glass. ADD NODS TO NATURE Add subtle references to the great outdoors through careful fabric selection. A mountain-patterned fabric on accent dining room chairs and camouflage fabric from Baker on Berman Rosetti armchairs in the great room fit the bill in this home. The custom chandelier by Studio Bel Vetro features a sophisticated take on antlers. THROW IN TEXTURE Nubby, fuzzy and furry rugs, throw pillows and upholstery fabric echo the outdoor world’s textural wonder. ADD DEPTH Brikor added visual depth by texturizing the walls and fireplaces with plaster. Jones says, “We created a house that lives up to the elegant, chic aesthetic expected in Aspen while also offering a cozy and livable mountain ambience.”

INTERIOR DESIGN Sarah Jones Interior Design
LANDSCAPE Busy Beavers
PLASTER DG Construction
PHOTOGRAPHY Gibeon Photography

Categories: Contemporary Homes