A heated lap pool was equipped with two boilers to maintain a year-round temperature of 84 degrees

Change for the Better

An ownership change shortly before a home’s completion requires a project team to adjust on the fly


A towering stone fireplace installed by A-Diaz Masonry takes center stage in the lofty living room

As Greek philosopher Heraclitus famously said, “Change is the only constant in life,” and that certainly holds true for a transitional-style Martis Camp masterpiece that experienced a few twists and turns on its way to fruition.   

Architect Keith Kelly of Kelly & Stone Architects and the team at Mark Tanner Construction had nearly finished the project when the owners had a life change and decided to sell the property. When another family with different needs and desires purchased it, Kelly and Tanner oversaw a real-time reimagining of the residence.

The result is a 4,901-square-foot home that fits right into its wooded surroundings. Outfitted with four bedrooms and five and a half baths, the house offers plenty of space for entertaining but is also ideal for quiet nights at home with the family. While the architecture remained traditional Tahoe style after the change, with deep overhangs, stone and wood siding, and timber beams, several aspects of the design were reconfigured to meet the new family’s needs.

“To start, we converted an outdoor patio to an inside space so it could be a sitting area that added a lot of square footage to the master bedroom,” says project manager Casey Eberhardt of Mark Tanner Construction.

With a sitting area, fireplace and floor-to-ceiling glass windows that overlook the forest beyond, the primary suite offers ample room for rest and relaxation. In addition to a deep soaking tub, the master bathroom comes with a plaster-finished shower enclosed in a glass-and-aluminum frame and a marble vanity.

“The master suite is extra large with a full office and television seating area to make for a great retreat area from the rest of the home,” says Tanner. “This completes a space of the home that can be fully self-contained.”

A covered outdoor living area includes a pizza oven and grill, along with a seating area with a fireplace and ceiling heaters

The rest of the interiors are warm and cozy, with wood and stone finishes that cement the house’s legacy as a mountain lodge, as well as more modern finishes like artistic wallpapers and custom paneling. “Barnwood accent walls near the fireplace add character, and the more rustic elements add texture,” says Eberhardt.

San Francisco-based interior designer Jay Jeffers envisioned an aesthetic that could seamlessly align with the changing Sierra Nevada seasons, with a bright and airy look during the summer and a comfy, homey feel during the winter. Many of the open-concept living spaces include vaulted ceilings, custom light fixtures and expansive glass windows that blur the lines between indoors and out.   

Outfitted with state-of-the-art appliances, an island that doubles as a breakfast nook, and blue cabinets and chairs that add pops of color, the kitchen was designed to make culinary lovers feel right at home. The adjacent dining room is the perfect setting for a dinner party with friends or a sit-down meal with family. Just outside, the lawn and woods beyond serve as a picturesque backdrop.

After a change in ownership mid-build, the project team converted an outdoor patio to an inside space that added square footage to the master bedroom

“We really focused on maximizing the indoor-outdoor connection,” says Kelly. “The connection to the site is strong, utilizing full walls of glass throughout much of the home to further strengthen the connection the users have to the outdoors. The unique placement of window openings maximizes light and views while ensuring privacy.”

Set on over 2 acres of land, the residence was well positioned to function as an outdoor oasis, so the family wanted to pay special attention to the exteriors. 

“We added room for a pizza oven and leveled out the back of the yard a bit to have space to play volleyball,” says Eberhardt. The team also added a large outdoor bar, grill, heat lamps and fire pits so the family could entertain during any season. 

Another major addition was a heated lap pool, which was outfitted with two boilers instead of one to maintain a year-round temperature of 84 degrees. The swimming pool was a must-have for the new owner, who loves swimming and wanted to easily get his laps in every day. Complete with a custom retractable wooden cover, the pool allows the owner to get in his desired workout in his own backyard even in the dead of winter. 

The primary bathroom features walls clad in a hand plaster that carries into the shower, which is enclosed in steel and glass

The design and build teams also paid special attention to the natural features of the site, determined to avoid making unnecessary impacts that would require repair and revegetation. For example, the garage is kinked at an obtuse angle to protect a group of large trees on the site. 

“There was a lot of input and consideration given to how the house would perform in this environment, from ensuring roofs shed snow in a way to eliminate the reliance on gutters and snow fences to incorporation of high-quality, energy-efficient windows and insulation that performs well above code-mandated minimums,” says Kelly. 

From start to finish, every inch of the house was carefully designed to be a warm, livable retreat that the family could enjoy for years to come. While Heraclitus’ quote so often proves true, this Tahoe treasure is proof that unexpected twists and turns can sometimes lead to a result that exceeds expectations.


Award: Mountain Retreat

Building Design: Kelly & Stone Architects

Builder: Mark Tanner Construction

Interior Design: JayJeffers Inc.

Landscape Design: High West Landscape Architects

Square Feet: 4,901

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