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Project of the Week – Hoke Residence

CAUSING A SENSATION – The residence provides a venue for interplay between the vibrant outdoor environment and dramatic interior spaces.

Location: Portland, Oregon
Architect: Skylab Architecture
Photography: Boone Speed & Jeremy Bittermann

If Hoke Residence looks oddly familiar to you, then you were probably parenting a tween circa 2008/2010 — either that or you’re an overage fan of young adult fiction. Yes, this is the house featured in the Twilight series. Celebrity status aside though, this home is dramatic by design. Originally a speculative project, Skylab Architecture set out to make a statement that would appeal to a broad spectrum of potential clients.

“The home features daring cantilevers, advanced building systems and controls,and cutting edge details — yet the surfaces, textures and spaces are natural and intuitive,” explains Jeff Kovel, Skylab founding principal. “Daylight and electric light play quietly against the warmth and textures of natural materials, but are modulated by surprising and inspiring geometries. This duality is mirrored in the dwelling’s flowing spaces, moving between crisp and deftly angular details, and framed views of the forest canopy or the primeval boulders upslope.”

WOODED WONDER – At once urban and wild, the residence is in harmony with, and a reflection of, its location at the border of Portland and Forest Park.

Pump Up the Volume(s)

To make volumes even more striking, the Skylab team needed an exceptional building material — one that’s striking enough to contrast the black mass on the first floor but also earthy enough to complement the surrounding woodland. They chose naturally beautiful Western Red Cedar siding, which is pitch and resin-free so it accepts and holds a wide range of finishes beautifully.

“We clad the cantilevered volume on the second floor on all sides in cedar to highlight it visually, and make a conceptual connection to the surrounding forest,” says Kovel, who specified a clear grade to enhance the contemporary aesthetic of the project.

“The cedar is holding up beautifully and minimal maintenance has been required.” – Jeff Kovel, AIA

A Cedar Star is Born

Considering this secluded Portland gem got Hollywood’s attention, Skylab clearly made the right design choices on all fronts.

“The Hoke residence is an iconic home that was subsequently featured in the Twilight movie series,” says Kovel, before adding, “And we believe the forested location and the choice of cedar to highlight the dramatic structural expression is responsible for this.”