When Cindy White stands in the entryway of her new Bend vacation home at Pronghorn Resort, it’s no wonder this is her favorite space in the house.
From the clear glass windows in the front entryway, you can see straight through to the back wall of windows into a private courtyard.
“We built this house to reflect the beauty of the High Desert,” says Cindy. “We insisted that this house would easily flow from the inside to the outside, bringing the outdoors in with lots of natural light.”
Husband Gregg White calls this 4,650-square-foot house, “a Northwest High Desert modern home,” with its four master bedroom suites and 51⁄2 bathrooms.
“Even with the color palette we were intentional, to bring the High Desert colors from the outside into the home with our furnishings,” says Gregg, who contracted with Bend Trend Homes to build his dream home.
Seasoned home designer David LiaBraaten, owner of DesignHaus, says he has an inclination toward functional modern designs.
“I believe this is the first custom home I designed to have dual-slope butterfly roofs,” says LiaBraaten, pointing to the varied angles of the roofline along the home.
Looking at the house from the outside, you can see the V-shaped, butterfly-winged roofs.
“The kitchen and living room are south-facing, so we put in large overhangs. This gives coverage to the window areas, so it’s solar-tempered.”
LiaBraaten says he’s interested in using angles to create as much passive solar heat as possible and yet still allow it to feel airy.
From the exterior, the house looks like a modern art sculpture that fits well into the landscape. The Whites used wood, stone and glass on the outside. An interesting exterior feature is the staircase tower, which is all windows, encased in stone. It is adjacent to the open entryway.
Even with all the windows, the house remains very private, as it sits on an acre lot adjacent to Pronghorn’s private golf course.
From the entryway, we enter the open living area, which encompasses a large living room, a dining room and a built-in bar area that leads into the massive kitchen with its angled windows. These not only provide more natural light but also add to the airy style.
The open design allows unencumbered views from the living room straight through to the kitchen, courtesy of interior and exterior glass walls.
Cindy says the open design was very intentional for large group gatherings, as they love to entertain guests, and during most parties, she says, guests always tend to linger in the kitchen area. So, she decided, why not accommodate this by making the kitchen extra large?
The first island in the kitchen is actually a modern rectangular breakfast bar. Under the breakfast bar, on the reverse side, is extra cupboard storage and two wine refrigerators. The breakfast bar island top is made of beige Silestone, a quartz counter surface, as is the long countertop surrounding the north side of this expansive kitchen.
To break up the same color of Silestone, Cindy decided to use slab granite for the second island kitchen, which is much wider than the breakfast bar. It had to be made stout to accommodate a large stainless-steel, commercial Wolf stove and double oven, above which is a commercial stainless steel hood.
“I do love to cook,” says Gregg a culinary hobbyist, who’s also an avid hunter and fisherman. “I cook a lot of fish and game meats.”
Cindy laughs and says Gregg does most of the cooking because she’s a vegetarian. Still, she appreciates this thoroughly modern kitchen.
The other appliances are all hidden beautifully behind sleek, white laminate-faced cupboards, including two subzero refrigerators.
The streamlined white kitchen is fresh and bright. Above the extra-large stainless-steel sink, the White family can gaze out a huge picture window into their private courtyard (the same one you can see from the entryway).
If they look south from the kitchen or dining room, they look into the largest courtyard area, with an outdoor dining set, a built-in barbecue area and an outdoor fireplace.
“Every room in this house has a view to the outside,” says Cindy. “We have five different patio courtyards, so if it gets too hot in one area, you can move to the other courtyards.”
Flooded with light
Just off the kitchen is a powder room, and farther down a hallway is a master suite belonging to their son, who’s away at college.
The room is flooded with natural light, with sun streaming through large corner windows that provide this room with views to the stunning outdoors.
Down a hall of glass windows, we pass by Gregg’s office, which can be closed off with large pocket doors that are easily hidden within the recesses of the wall. But why ever close the doors? While sitting at his desk, Gregg has an incredible view into another courtyard from the hallway’s windowed walls.
Just past this open office area is the Whites’ master suite. Like the rest of the home, it is bathed in natural light from all angles. A glass door from this bedroom leads directly into the same courtyard visible from Gregg’s office.
The entire master suite area, with its minimalist palette and clean design, makes the home feel like a sanctuary, and perhaps the master bathroom is the greatest example of this with its nod to a resort spa.
The extra-large steam shower is surrounded by windows to the outside. Next to the steam shower is an extra-large rectangular soaking bathtub that also fronts the same bank of windows.
To maintain privacy, an exterior enclosed wall was designed about 5 feet from this bathroom’s tall wall of windows.
“I’m eventually going to plant a garden there, so when you’re in the bathtub or in the shower it will feel like you’re still outside,” says Cindy.
The floating cupboards and sink area in this bathroom attest to her minimalist aesthetics.
Back in the main living area, the large rectangular dining room table, made from reclaimed wood, is stained in a gray hue. Above the table is a large, modern rectangular crystal chandelier that gives the open area a subtle focal point without taking away anything from the other areas.
Much of the Whites’ modern furniture came from Furnish, a modern furnishings store in Bend, and Restoration Hardware.
In the living room, a white modern sectional sofa faces an embedded wall fireplace. Built-in shelving made of dark wood looks like art in and of itself, and Cindy says she has to make sure she doesn’t clutter the streamlined look.
Views abound to the outside from the living room’s front wall of windows, where juniper trees dot the property. Cindy says they tried to save as many juniper trees as they could when building their home.
The rest of the house
Ascending the stairway from the open entryway, a landing has windows that reach to the ceiling. Here, Cindy has planted a large basin of succulent plants that are thriving next to the windows. Facing the wall side of the staircase is an oil painting of the Cascade Mountains by David Klinker. Gazing at the large painting, it looks almost like a trompe d’oeil, as if you’re looking out another window.
At the top of the staircase with its cabled wire banister is Gregg’s “man cave,” also known as the media room, with its 80-inch television and surround-sound stereo. Automated shades on the upper windows roll down for movie time with a flick of a remote switch.
Off the media room is a small deck with peek-a-boo views of the Cascades and full views of the golfing greens.
On the other side of the media room is another full-size bathroom. If the Whites have a full house, the media room can be used as another spare guest room. The Whites say they intentionally designed the house to have most of the living space occupy the ground floor, so they can age in place.
Just below the media room, on the first floor’s north wing, are two more master suites. One of the rooms belongs to 14-year-old daughter Lauren White. Like her brother’s room on the other side of the house, Lauren’s room has corner windows that look out to another courtyard. Farther down this north wing is one more master suite for guests.
Cindy laughs when asked about her favorite room and quickly marches us to the laundry/mud room.
“This is it,” she exclaims proudly of the 14-by-14-foot laundry room. “It’s the best thing we ever did.”
Cindy put in double-stacked, full-size washers and dryers, and even this room has an island with a sink. As in the kitchen, all the cupboards here are streamlined, and when you love to entertain, Cindy says you need lots of food. So naturally, she added a refrigerator in this large laundry room — it’s hidden behind the white melamine cupboard panels.
With this thoroughly modern house, the Whites opted for a coherent design with deceptively simple but well-thought-out plans, from the media room to the mud room.
The Whites, who moved into this house two months ago, intend to host family and friends on a regular basis and feel this house is big enough and equipped enough to handle everyone, without ever feeling crowded.
The only problem they may face is that no guest will ever want to leave this modern sanctuary.
“This is my dream home,” says Cindy, who along with Gregg plans to retire here full time. “I honestly, can’t think of anything that I would change.”
The house was designed to fit into the High Desert landscape, and it is certainly home among the juniper trees, and the Whites couldn’t be more pleased to have this sanctuary away from the busy urban area of Portland.
— Reporter: firstname.lastname@example.org