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Chain Bridge House
Arlington, Virginia 

This house, located in a neighborhood along the Potomac River and very close to Washington, is designed for an international couple with complementary backgrounds. The wife, of Moroccan and European heritage, asked for a courtyard-style house with Moroccan roots. In deference to local weather, a generously proportioned living room, in lieu of the courtyard, serves as the heart of the house. 

The husband, a retired American CEO, asked for a substantial house, well built and carefully put together, efficient, well detailed and well organized. 

Our response was to create a large delicate and transparent inner core of steel, glass and zinc, flanked with two robust limestone-clad wings containing the private spaces. All three parts share a common width and structural rhythm.

Like a Moroccan house, privacy from the street is achieved through an arrival garden courtyard and a reserved facade, protected by a veil of wood louvers. Then, upon entry - as in the best American houses- the interior completely opens through walls of glass to a pool and terraces leading to the wooded ravine below.