Currently Reading

Luxury Home Inspiration for Homebuyers Seeking Upscale Living

House Review

Luxury Home Inspiration for Homebuyers Seeking Upscale Living

High-functioning plans that offer appealing scale, special features, and ample square footage

By Larry W. Garnett, FAIBD, House Review Lead Designer August 6, 2018
Luxury home exterior
The Dahlin Group's hacienda-style Artesian Estates Plan 3 has an open floor plan that emphasizes indoor/outdoor connection.
This article first appeared in the August 2018 issue of Pro Builder.

Defining the term “luxury home” has always proved somewhat of a challenge. While we tend to assume that larger square footage is a basic ingredient, luxury is about far more than just size. As you review the following high-end designs from our team, you’ll see several common elements that characterize a luxurious design, from an amazing level of craftsmanship and attention to detail, to features such as verandas and loggia-flanked courtyards with fireplaces, fountains, and stunning vistas blurring the lines between indoors and out. 

House Review’s annual look at upscale homes always offers surprises, and this year is no exception. Notice the specialty areas such as massage therapy rooms, climatized storage, and music rooms or art studios. As unique as these features may be, the home designs themselves maintain a high level of functionality and scale. Each plan addresses the client’s preferences while taking full advantage of the building site. 


Artesian Estates Plan 3

ARCHITECT: Dahlin Group Architecture | Planning, marketing@dahlingroup.com, 925.251.7200

PLAN SIZE: Width: 120 feet, 6 inches; Depth: 84 feet, 6 inches; Living area: 5,562 sf

This two-story, four-bedroom, 4 ½-bath home, designed in a hacienda style (see image, above), has open floor plans that emphasize an indoor/outdoor experience. With lot-specific plotting, no two homes are sited the same, creating a semi-custom home. Multiple areas of the home offer a connection to the outdoors via pocket doors, and there are multiple flex spaces. Located on the western peak of a master planned community with neighborhood parks, pools, and trails, this home is truly a luxurious retreat. (Developer: CalAtlantic Homes, a Lennar company.)

House Review_Dahlin_Artesian Estates_First floor plan.png


House Review_Dahlin_Artesian Estates_Second floor plan.png


House Review_Dahlin_Artesian Estates_plan key.png

House Review_Dahlin_Artesian Estates_exterior 2.png


Contemporary Hillside Retreat

ARCHITECT: KGA Studio Architects, Kiley Baham, AIA, kbaham@kgarch.com, 303.442.5882

PLAN SIZE: Width: 109 feet; Depth: 93 feet; Living area: 5,564 sf

This custom home on a steeply sloping site only comes into view as you proceed down the driveway, revealing expansive vistas of the surrounding mountains and nearby city of Colorado Springs. Designed for an empty-nester couple who lived abroad for many years but wanted to retire closer to family, the home nestles into its wooded surroundings with clean lines, a modern aesthetic, and a natural color palette. Oriented to take full advantage of sweeping vistas to the east, nearly every room boasts a spectacular view and connection to the outdoors. Perfect for entertaining, the home features an open floor plan with a bar at the heart of the main living area—a feature not typical in the U.S. but inspired by the homeowners’ international travels.

KGA_Contemporary Hillside Retreat_main floor


KGA_Contemporary Hillside Retreat_lower level.png


KGA_Contemporary Hillside Retreat_plan key

KGA_Contemporary Hillside Retreat_exterior.png


The Courtyard House

ARCHITECT: EDI International, Richard Handlen, AIA, richard.handlen@edi-international.com, 415.362.2880

PLAN SIZE: Width: 124 feet; Depth: 124 feet; Living area: 4,500 sf

This custom home in a community where snowbirds flock to escape northern winters provides the artist-owner with a full-time house as well as a rental unit to take advantage of the seasonal rental market. The client wanted privacy, yet to be able to use the whole house when the rental unit wasn’t occupied. A central courtyard separates the main house and rental unit, and the public rooms focus on the mountain views to the rear of the site.

EDI_Courtyard House_plan.png

EDI_Courtyard House_plan key 1.pngEDI_Courtyard House_plan 2.png


EDI_Courtyard House_plankey 3 .pngEDI_Courtyard House_plankey 4.png



EDI_Courtyard House_exterior.png



ARCHITECT: TK Design & Associates, Todd Hallett, AIA, thallett@tkhomedesign.com, 248.446.1960

PLAN SIZE: Width: 75 feet, 4 inches; Depth: 57 feet, 6 inches; Living area: 8,229 sf

Luxury homes are typically large, well-appointed, and of the highest quality, and this house delivers all that and more. Designed to be nestled in nature and overlooking the beautiful surroundings, the home boasts 1,160 square feet of porch and deck space and 1,766 square feet of garage space. 

TK Design_Renee_first floor plan


TK Design_Renee_second floor plan


TK Design_Renee_lower level


TK Design_Renee_plan key


TK Design_Renee_elevation.png


Island Luxury

ARCHITECT: The Evans Group, Donald F. Evans, AIA, devans@theevansgroup.com, 407.650.8770

PLAN SIZE: Width: 85 feet; Depth: 140 feet; Living area: 9,997 sf

Fractional ownership for a second home is still a viable option for many luxury buyers—it’s not the dreaded timeshare. This home has up to 10 individual owners, each owning five weeks, leaving two weeks for scheduled yearly maintenance and freshening. This buying option gives owners much more bang for their buck, with far less stress and responsibility. With just under 10,000 square feet on four levels and the ability to accommodate 20 people, this home defines luxury vacationing. And, of course, there’s an elevator. 

Evans Group_Island Luxury_level 1 and 2


Evans Group_Island Luxury_level 3 and 4


Evans Group_Island Luxury_plan key


Evans Group_Island Luxury_elevation


Related Stories

House Review

Create More Diverse Housing Options With Accessory Dwelling Units

ADUs provide homeowners with a range of opportunities for independent living and aging in place, or for added long-term or vacation rental income


Fresh Design Ideas for Open-Plan Kitchens and Living Spaces

Pro Builder's House Review team offers ways home builders can update and improve the design of open-plan kitchen, dining, living spaces

House Review

Outdoor Living Takes Center Stage in These Multifunctional Spaces

These well-designed outdoor living spaces serve multiple uses, increasing homeowner's enjoyment of the outdoors year round


Top Articles


More in Category

COVID-19 may be easing its grip on the U.S. after a disastrous two years, but lingering supply chain disruptions have builders holding onto their pandemic business tactics

An archive of NHQA-winning companies that represent home building's best in Total Quality Management

Don’t let the current hype about single-family B2R communities obscure the need to create long-term sustainability and asset value


Create an account

By creating an account, you agree to Pro Builder's terms of service and privacy policy.

Daily Feed Newsletter

Get Pro Builder in your inbox

Each day, Pro Builder's editors assemble the latest breaking industry news, hottest trends, and most relevant research, delivered to your inbox.

Save the stories you care about

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet lorem ipsum dolor sit amet lorem ipsum dolor sit amet.

The bookmark icon allows you to save any story to your account to read it later
Tap it once to save, and tap it again to unsave

It looks like you’re using an ad-blocker!

Pro Builder is an advertisting supported site and we noticed you have ad-blocking enabled in your browser. There are two ways you can keep reading:

Disable your ad-blocker
Disable now
Subscribe to Pro Builder
Already a member? Sign in
Become a Member

Subscribe to Pro Builder for unlimited access

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipisicing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua.