In Scottsdale, Arizona, Oz Architects Designs Private Residence #4—A Desert-set Dwelling With a Rustic European Flavor in the Midst of Valley and Mountain Views
If the name of this project—Private Residence #4—has a fairly innocuous ring to it, the reality is more magnificent by far. An impeccable work of architecture and interior design by Scottsdale, Arizona-based Oz Architects, it is a prized address highly attuned to the rapture of its locale, and to the aesthetically international inclinations of its owners, making good work of both.
“This was designed to be a home that will last for many years, and also meant to be a gathering place for their family throughout the years,” says Inga L. Rehmann, interior design director/lead interior designer of Oz Architects, who worked on the project in collaboration with Don Ziebell, principal/architect; Zahir Poonawala, project architect; Laura Huttenhauer, interior designer; and builder Desert Star Construction.
“If we can help our clients create that for themselves and their family, it is the most meaningful part of our work.”
What work. Oz Architects manifested their knowing in a style that the firm characterizes as “Rural Mediterranean with a French Provencal tone.”
Another word: exquisite. No detail was sacrificed in the design of the space. This home is not just pretty and well-appointed, it’s an amalgam of influences, sensitively and judiciously selected, with its nods to the French aesthetic particularly lovely.
Not pieces handpicked from a catalog or seized from a showroom, mind you, but straight from the source. From the fireplaces and stone fountains to the roof tile, antique doors, and beams, many of the home’s unique pieces were obtained on a client-firm trip to Provence, France—a harvest that both authenticated and amplified the stunningly cohesive space.
“We believe in connected experiences, where the rooms themselves are not all the same; they have individuality but are connected within a larger story,” explains Inga L. Rehmann.
In this home, some rooms, like the reading room, she notes, “are more compressed and intimate, while other rooms, such as the kitchen and family room, really open up in volume and in light, making this a wonderful place for a whole family to gather in.”
“The open floorplan in the kitchen/living areas,” she adds, “reinforces the closeness of friends and family who are invited into the heart of the home.”
Who dares resist the invitation? The place is a splendor, steeped in character and materiality, with the elaborations of fine French style in harmonious coexistence with au courant touches. The space, which began on a traditional track, slowly veered in a more contemporary direction with the introduction of clean lines and modern elements, always mixed with a sophisticated material palette utilizing warm and natural materials that pull in the tones and textures of the gracious landscape.
“Throughout the home, you will find juxtapositions of old versus new, clean versus rustic, traditional versus modern, and smooth versus textured,” Inga L. Rehmann remarks of the intriguing frictions that suffuse the space with an old soul and a fresh spirit.
Locally sourced stone-clad walls, clay plaster and a compelling patchwork of wood flooring (antique French Oak beams, reclaimed French attic boards) lend the space a rustic elegance, while elements such as antique limestone door and window surrounds, in addition to custom steel windows and doors, provide a contemporary counterbalance.
Of special note is the double dutch French door—a first for its manufacturer—in the non-traditional kitchen, which also features limestone as a countryside counter material, augmented by reclaimed wood cabinet faces complementing more current painted millwork, a soapstone countertop, and poured pewter island top.
Even when every space is a showcase, a designer will divulge a few favorites. For Inga L. Rehmann: the office, adorned with an antique French Partner Desk from Mecox (“we think it might have been used by a banker originally,” she says), a 19th century Genovese chandelier from Lucca Antiques, and steel French Doors from Hope’s; the family room, accented with antique French Oak beams, re-edition limestone flooring, local mortar-washed stone walls, a custom Feu-Fire fireplace grate from OZ|SHOP (the firm’s sister company), Lee Industries lounge chairs, and a 19th-century Italian wood and iron chandelier, also from Lucca Antiques.
She also points to the powder room, featuring a custom re-edition limestone sink from Antiquities Imports and lamps by Porta Romana, as well as the wine cellar, with design finds including sconces from Urban Electric, John Derian folding chairs, and cabinetry made from antique attic board planks on a clay plaster base with wine storage.
“Not only did our clients create amazing memories that have become part of the story of their home,” says Inga L. Rehmann, “but we were able to create spaces that have an element of soul and permanence that is hard to get in today’s world.”
If much at all. Large houses especially fall victim to homogenized design. Not so Private Residence #4, a physical expression of Oz Architects’ holistic ethos—and a world unto itself.
Oz Architects | ozarchitects.com
Photography by Lisa Romerein