The Lower Foxtail Residence is located in Yellowstone Club, a private residential ski and golf resort in Big Sky, Montana, USA. The home was designed by Reid Smith Architects and built by Teton Heritage Builders using, among other things, triple pane Unilux windows across the south facing exposure of the home. The large expanse of glazings allows the panoramic views of the surrounding Rocky Mountains to permeate the interior voids as spectacular natural artscapes. Layering onto this, Len Cotsovolos of LC2 Design Services finished the home with materials and dark tones that emulated the natural elements beyond for a finished result of warmth and sophistication with a touch of glitz.
From a distance the cozy haven that is the lower Foxtail Residence beckons after a day of skiing in the winter or golfing in the summer.
If the homeowners have been skiing, they can ski right up to the mudroom entrance.
The mudroom is fully equipped with ski racks and plenty of storage. A large Zen like portrait on the wall sets the tone for a calmer environment within.
If, instead of skiing, the homeowners are returning from a trip into town, the front of the home is equipped with a three-car garage to keep their vehicles warm.
The homeowners can enter the home from the garage, while guests enter either from the glass-faced entryway or walk around to the covered terrace on the side of the home. A third option would be to hang out on the terrace where they can keep warm around the open-faced fireplace.
If the decision is to enter the residence, guests are greeted with a warm and cozy environment of weathered boards, glass and stone surfaces as well as feature moments of art. Even the chandelier above the stairwell is a dazzling work of art.
The foyer opens up to the social zone of the home with the kitchen to the right and the living area straight ahead. The colour scheme is decidedly neutral with the only punch coming from the sunset canvas hanging above the foyer bureau.
With the social zone backed up to wall of glazing, the view of the Rocky Mountains are on full display even from the foyer.
The decision to clad the complete fireplace wall in rough blocks of stone and finishing the post and beam structure in a weathered look allows the home to settle naturally into the landscape, the added touch of the tree art plays on the perspective of the locale while the bubble chair brings on the whimsy.
The tree art isn’t the only natural wood formations used within the living room. Two coffee tables consisting of burl slabs with polished tops and live edges are casually placed within the void created by the supersized sectional.
The weathered woods and natural finishes are contrasted with the pale wood flooring to keep the zone from feeling too heavy. Layered into this is a rhythm of sparkling stars created by the various chandeliers and pot lights.
The chandelier above the dining table is a stunning organic display of lit flowers on branch formations and the live edge dining table below it is the perfect compliment. It is almost as though you are really dining outside.
That feeling of dining outside is emphasized by the snow piling up against the clerestory windows above the kitchen wall. In the kitchen I love the unique concept of creating a wrap around shelving unit on the end of the bar. This geometric formation is an interesting foil the predominantly organic features used within the home. I also am excited by the colour flow from the kitchen to the outdoor fireplace on the terrace. This indoor outdoor connectivity adds a greater sense of depth to the social zone.
The residence has a second living area that is specifically for their own private use and access to that zone is via the stairwell next to the foyer. Although this volume is more private, entry to it is not restricted to a hidden staircase but rather by a feature stairwell of glass, open treads and powder coated metal support structures.
the family room is divided into two zones, a sitting area complete with 3 couches and an office area consisting of 2 tables with seats around each side and lamps in the middle.
A secondary staircase is tucked away from sight and offers a quiet transition to the many bedrooms of the residence.
The Master Bedroom is wrapped in glazing for stunning views of the Rockies. Even the TV is lowered into a cabinet so as not to block the views when not in use. During the warmer weather months, a door within the glazing opens up to a private deck.
The Master Bedroom is kept warm by a fireplace located on the same stone wall as the living room. A small seating area in front of the fire is kept lit and fn by the large chrome pendants hung in a cluster to create almost a mobile effect. Behind the headboard wall is the closets and ensuite.
The ensuite features stone vessel sinks and the natural graining within the sinks keep that organic aesthetic flowing (pun intended). The vanity is open to the closet space behind and only the three columns of mirror create any separation. This allows the views from the windows to penetrate past the ensuite and into the dressing area. Within the ensuite a graceful brass side table is perched next to the soaker tub ready to hold a cup or glass at a moment’s notice. In the distance a dressing table niche features a pretty Lucite chair.
The ensuite looks out in a different direction then the social zone and Master Bedroom. Here a lake of frozen ice creates a dramatic juxtaposition to the soaker tub – warm water in one, ice water in the other.
A second bedroom features faux fur coverings on the bed, stone and weathered wood on the walls and side tables of strapped wood pieces for an overall wood cabin flavour. The attached ensuite can be left open or closed off for privacy.
A third bedroom breaks from the dark colour palette and introduces a variety of whites via the bed linens, area carpet, textured wallpaper, and of course the blown up photo of dandelion seeds. Here, too, the attached ensuite can be left open or closed off.
A fourth bedroom is located on another corner of the residence and also strays from the dark brown colour palette preferring to showcase the cooler shades of grey with bursts of potent red via the artwork.
The pops of red are located so as not to interfere with nature’s colour palette when lounging in the bed or on the chaise in front of the bed.
The ensuite to this bedroom reverts back to the brown shades and repeats the same two level vanity as the other two bedroom ensuites did. The vertical band of chocolate brown mosaics framing out the higher sink is a graphic punch of texture that plays on the geometry and planes of the duo level counter.
2 more bathrooms located in the Lower Foxtail Residence are (left) the powder room for guests and (right) downstairs next to the stairwell in the private volume. The vanity in the powder room is a large block of weathered wood complete with all of its natural checking, succulents in rock vases complete the natural look while the stainless steel vessel sink offers a slight industrial touch.
In contrast, the downstairs bathroom is a study of hard lines and geometric shapes. Even the painting on the wall is an abstracted study of linear lines in complimentary hues.
From every angle within the Lower Foxtail Residence, the views are awesome and the décor is divine. Kudos to the architects, builders and designers for coming together to create such a cozy retreat amongst the snowy peaks of the Rocky Mountains.
Reid Smith Architects
Teton Heritage Builders
Interior Architecture by Len Cotsovolos of LC2 Design Services
Photography by Roger Wade Studio