This very small house (by Montecito standards) was designed by G W Smith to be the garage, laundry and servants quarters for a huge mansion that, because of the Depression, never got built. The two floors had never even been connected. The main task was to create a normal house out of a building, which was never designed to be one and to find just enough space to put in a suitable stair without robbing too much from all the other required rooms. The house was so historically important that only one tiny addition was allowed at the back, where nobody could see it. But a balance was achieved: ways were figured out for the new stair hall to borrow space from the living room below and a hallway above. And the owner’s exquisite tile selections helped to turn small spaces into jewel boxes.

Santa Barbara, California

Original design in 1928 by
Alexander Harmer

Construction By
Allen Construction