In My Dream House

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After many years of creating other people’s dream houses, Santa Barbara builder Bruce Giffin says his dream home would incorporate four essential elements.

October 01, 2000

 

Bruce Giffin

 

After many years of creating other people’s dream houses, Santa Barbara builder Bruce Giffin says his dream home would incorporate four essential elements: a beautiful site, inspiring views, a sense of quality and peace and a symbiotic relationship between the home and its surroundings.

"The home should be a place to recharge, but it should also feel at home in its own surroundings."

Mostly, he’d like to design his dream home with the same principle he uses for all his homes: "We’re creating a big piece of sculpture you can walk into. How does it feel? Where does the light fall? These are questions I ask."

 

His wife says she’s only moving once more, so the Giffins’ new home has to be perfect. His design will draw from what’s worked well in other homes including a huge sandstone fireplace and lots of indoor/outdoor alcoves that give family members privacy within earshot of others.
Giffin builds in eclectic styles, he says, but would choose a hacienda or rancho style—preferably with a small second story as an exclusively kids’ domain -- for his own dream home because it’s "square, plump, level and has a lot of integrity."

 

To capture the views and light, windows -- and lots of them -- should be twice as tall as they are wide and "picture frame" certain vistas. The actual lot hasn‘t been bought, but Giffin says his dream site is "a slice of land between the ocean and the mountains."

 

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