Jarvis Architects is an architectural and landscape design firm based in the San Francisco Bay Area. It was established in the year 1970, and continues to specialize in residential and neighbourhood commercial projects. They draw inspiration from several different historic and contemporary architectural styles, including Mediterranean Style, Prairie Style, and Modern architecture. In their designs, they aim to preserve the distinct characteristics of these varied styles while still celebrating the client’s personality. They focus on maximizing the potential of the site, and creating warm, open interiors, and accentuating indoor-outdoor interaction. Passive solar design, environmentally sensitive construction, natural lighting and energy-conserving features are incorporated into each project.

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Some of their finest works include:

1. Townhomes in Rockridge

Location: Oakland, California

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This project includes six new townhomes, constructed using the lumber salvaged from the original buildings on the site. Each home contains three bedrooms and two-and-a-half baths, and a kitchen, living and dining areas, full basement storage as well as off-street parking.

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2. Modern Brown Shingle

Location: Berkeley Hills, California.

This new contemporary home is built on a steep upslope wooded parcel abutting the Covert Path, one of the walking paths in the locality. The low slope roof with wide eaves, flared cedar shingles and stucco base draw inspiration from the many early Bay Tradition homes. This home provides many different filtered views of the Bay, a spacious and bright open floor plan, modern finishes and unique tile details.

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3. Spanish Style Home

Location: Orinda, CA

This new 5 bedroom home welcomes guests into a paved courtyard and provides a variety of interesting views and details throughout the house. A second-floor bridge across to a master suite provides a framed view of the hills below. Semi-detached guest quarters are linked by the bridge. A large dormer over the garage houses an Au Pair suite. The clay tile roof and interior exposed beams are recycled material from Mexico.

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4. Sustainably Modern

Location: Oakland, California

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This Upper Rockridge home features large open living spaces connecting magnificent views from the east to the west side of the site. The large windows on this floor and the bedrooms above provide beautiful amounts of natural daylight. Sustainable features of the project include solar electricity and hot water, hydronic radiant floor heating, on-demand hot water recirculation pump, high-efficiency lighting and appliances, recycled construction waste, and locally sourced natural materials.

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5. Cottage on Lake Mendota

Location: Madison, Wisconsin

This Shingle Style cottage offers expansive lake and garden views from every room. Open living spaces on the lakeside step out to a bluestone terrace, with broad steps leading down to a lawn. Most rooms feature stylized built-in furniture in windowed alcoves.

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6. Watershed Oasis

Location: Orinda, California

Located adjacent to the Lafayette reservoir watershed, this project features warm wooden accents, including reclaimed redwood sourced from nearby. The focus was on flexible communal space, to be shared with friends and family. The home features a large hall with sliding glass doors that lead onto the picturesque hillside courtyard, complete with outdoor kitchen and dining area.

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7. Craftsman Home

Location: Berkeley, California

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This model features numerous aspects of the home’s original Craftsman structure–such as its diamond double-hung windows. An integrated floor plan allows for fluid passage throughout, culminating in a light-filled breakfast nook, an extension of the rear side of the home.

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8. Southwestern Pied-a-Terre

Location: Oakland, California

Jarvis helped homeowners design a new upstairs pied-à-terre (literally: small living unit), that would pare down in size, but build up to capture views, light and spaciousness. The focal point of the addition is a large living room, the drama heightened by custom wooden beams that accentuate the soaring vaulted ceiling of the structure.

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9. Classic Brown Shingle

Location: Oakland, California

This Craftsman Style home provides space for family functions, recreation, and outdoor enjoyment. A split-level addition, made by the firm to the side of the home accommodates a new office and family room.

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10. East Coast Traditional

Location:  Berkeley, California

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Jarvis Architects outfitted this hillside Berkeley home with a new master bedroom suite, bathrooms, kitchen and light-filled stairway. The steep terrain of the backyard was excavated to accommodate a new brick patio and several intimate view terraces. A new cottage and hot tub were built at the high end of the lot.

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11. Mediterranean Style Home

Location: Berkeley, California

The firm adopted distinct Mediterranean Style architecture details to this project. The design demanded extensive interior renovation and brought much-needed space, light and views to this tightly-sited Mediterranean house. The three bathrooms are stylised in Oriental to Moroccan designs.

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12. Entry Garden

Location: Oakland, California

Flanked by two stucco pillars at street level, the entry path to the garden is framed by a series of meticulously crafted dry-stacked stone walls, which double as benches at landing areas. Planted with edible roses, herbs, fruit trees and vines, plus a few strategically placed planter boxes, this south-facing yard is not only a pleasure to view, but a garden that gives back.3

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13. French Countryside Style

Location:  Oakland, California

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This Oakland home was landscaped to create an efficient and ecologically-minded space where parents and children alike can enjoy the splendour of the outdoors. The back yard is host to a large lawn and play structure, and edged by a vegetable garden of edible greenery.

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14. Rustic Berkeley Garden

Location: Berkeley, California

This landscape project by the firm was done to include drought-tolerant, multi-use backyard settings. Hardscapes such as flagstone pavements and decomposed granite provide textural variety.

The dry riverstone swale collects and disperses rainwater on-site, a sustainable addition made by the firm. A fire pit with built-in seating provides a rustic, informal setting for outdoor entertaining.

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15. Edible Garden

Location: Berkeley, California

This corner lot project features edible plants and herbs prominently. The front and side yard were planted with drought-tolerant plants such as lavender and fig. Edible plants such as blueberry and pumpkin add rich colour to the rustic hardscape. A brick path and wooden fence complement the existing home.

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Author

Samriddhi Khare is a student of architecture. While juggling college submissions and research deadlines she finds time to write about architecture. She is a passionate individual with a penchant for architectural design, art history and creative writing. She aspires to bring design activism and sustainability to the forefront in all her professional endeavours.

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