The Calm of Nature at Every Turn

A family's dreamy all-season home in Tahoe balances a flurry of activity with enduring serenity
Photos by Paul Dyer Photography

Designed as a second home for a young family from the Bay Area, this 5,000-square-foot Tahoe home balances high foot traffic and all-season durability with a delicate, indoor-outdoor tranquility.

Located on a beautiful, tree-littered lot in Martis Camp, the mountain retreat enjoys golf course access in the summer and skiing in the winter—and plenty of natural light and cozy nooks for lounging.

“My vision was to stay a bit quiet with the interiors so the natural landscape is what sings as the artwork,” says the home’s designer Jennifer Macdonald, founder and owner of Jennifer Robin Interiors. “I envisioned a home loaded with texture and classic visual interest—a palette to make sense in all seasons.”

And that it does. With indoor-outdoor access, three small children, and a constant flow of family and guests, the home welcomes a flurry of activity with enduring calm. Take a tour below.

In addition to walking right into the scenery framed by the home’s exterior wall, a large custom dining table greets guests upon entry. Crafted by Statsky Design, the table boasts  reclaimed wood in an X pattern and is accentuated by a grand chandelier above.

“We positioned the chandelier so that it serves as a focal point as you enter the home,” Macdonald says, “but without blocking the views.”

I envisioned a home loaded with texture and classic visual interest—a palette to make sense in all seasons.” — Designer Jennifer Macdonald

A bear print by Peter Samuels Photography hangs over an antique table in the home’s entryway.

With thoughtful details like the tile backsplash, cabinetry paneling (and metal accent), patinaed black metal hood, and island made of reclaimed wood wrapped in concrete, the kitchen is light, bright and loaded with rustic texture.

The windows above the farmhouse sink pivot and pocket out, and the countertop runs seamlessly to the outside bar.

“This feature expands the whole kitchen and eating area,” Macdonald says.

“The patio maximizes entertainment space and indoor-outdoor living,” Macdonald says. In addition to the bar and extra lounging spots, the space boasts a large fire pit and a hot tub that seats 16.

A gorgeous, reclaimed-wood sofa table from Coup D’etat greets you upon re-entry to the great room through the pivoting glass doors.

Custom cabinetry sits on either side of the stone fireplace. “One side hides the TV; the other side has a wet bar,” Macdonald adds.

An antique ladder adds a pop of playfulness to the great room.

A hanging mirror, Phillip Jeffries wallpaper, Robert Long sconces, and a Native Trails concrete sink take center stage in the powder room, off the dining area.

The master suite is a relaxation haven. “We completely loaded the space with neutral textures to make it super cozy,” says Macdonald. “Large hanging mirrors on either side of the bed make the space feel even larger.”

Macdonald wanted to think outside the box with the master suite’s fireplace to give the TV less weight in the space, so she anchored it with reclaimed wood, a patinaed black-metal surround, and chain details “for a graphic element.”

To create privacy from the master bath window, Macdonald incorporated bottom-up/top-down shades and hung large mirrors over the vanity.

A rustic-chic chandelier from Arteriors Home hangs above the staircase.

​A junior master bedroom/guest room is perched on the upper level. “We were limited on space so we accentuated the height of the room,” Macdonald says. “It feels sort of like a treehouse.” A sliding barn door also maximizes square feet in the room to accommodate the forest green Bungalow Classic armchair.

The girl’s bedroom sits pretty, with soft blues and pinks. “We wanted feminine details that still tied into a mountain-home feel.” The custom headboard stretches across the wall—”adding a textural color punch and a layer of coziness,” says Macdonald.

Built-ins add more storage and interest to the room, along with metal screens and wood-and-leather pulls on the cabinetry.

The boys’ bedroom is the ultimate sleepover spot, with two full-size beds and pull-out trundles.

Perhaps the coziest spot of all, the home’s upstairs media room is the perfect retreat on snow days or after a long day of playing outdoors.

A huge TV hangs amid funky angles, which Macdonald accentuated with felt plaid wallpaper, plaid carpet and fun furnishings. Extra-deep, built-in seating can double as multiple beds, upping the potential guest list.


INTERIOR DESIGN Jennifer Robin Interiors ARCHITECTURE KSA Architects FLOORING Monarch oak hardwood flooring ENTRY BEAR ART Peter Samuels Photography ANTIQUE ENTRY TABLE 1stdibs KITCHEN CUSTOM ISLAND STOOLS Kroll Furniture ISLAND PENDANTS Magni Home DINING CUSTOM DINING TABLE Gabriel Statsky Furniture Design DINING CHAIRS Hollywood at Home DINING BENCHES Cisco Home CUSTOM CHANDELIER Mick Handley Design LIVING ROOM CUSTOM PLAID WING CHAIRS Kroll Furniture with Osborne & Little fabric SOFAS Dmitriy & Co with de Le Cuona fabric LEATHER OTTOMANS/COFFEE TABLES A. Rudin with Dualoy leather SODA CONSOLES Coup D’etat CONSOLE TABLE LAMPS Lawson-Fenning ANTIQUE FIREPLACE MIRROR Obsolete AREA RUG Stark Carpet POWDER BATH WALLPAPER Phillip Jeffries FAUCET Brizo SINK Native Trails SCONCES Robert Long MASTER BEDROOM CUSTOM UPHOLSTERED BED Kroll Furniture with Maharam fabric THROW Anthem in San Francisco CUSTOM BEDSIDE TABLES Matthew Chase Woodworks TABLE LAMPS Alexander Lamont AREA RUG Stark Carpet ANTIQUE BENCH Sonoma Country Antiques WALL MIRRORS Robert James Collection UPHOLSTERED CHAIR Cisco Home with Sequana fabric ANTIQUE SIDE TABLES Obsolete MASTER BATH PLUMBING Ludlow from Waterworks PRIMITIVE 3-LEGGED TABLE France circa 1900 ART Local artist purchased from Bespoke in Truckee SCONCES Pheonix Day ANTIQUE RUG Tony Kitz in San Francisco JUNIOR MASTER BEDROOM METAL CANOPY BED Bungalow Classic BEDSIDE TABLES Made Goods WALL SCONCES Soane Britain ARMCHAIR Bungalow Classic SLATTED CONSOLE Bungalow Classic KIDS’ BEDROOMS CUSTOM TUFTED WALL HEADBOARD AND BASE Kroll Furniture BEDSIDE TABLES Currey & Co. DESK CHAIR Anthropologie WOOD/LEATHER CABINETRY HARDWARE Walnut Studiolo BOYS’ BEDROOM BEAR SERVICE ART Super Simple STAIRWAY Arteriors Home MEDIA ROOM WALLPAPER Phillip Jeffries LEATHER STOOLS Made Goods FEATHER ART Super Simple SWIVEL CHAIR Room & Board ANTIQUE COFFEE TABLES Dos Gallos SaveSaveSaveSaveSaveSaveSaveSaveSaveSaveSaveSaveSaveSaveSaveSaveSaveSaveSaveSave


Categories: Contemporary Homes