● By Alesha Damerville
Soda Mountain Construction presents: The Monk Home in Barn Village. Featured in the 2018 Home Edition of Steamboat Magazine.
By Suzi Mitchell
STEAMBOAT SPRINGS-On a blustery Thursday in August 2017, David and Lorraine Monk dropped their dog at their son’s home in Houston and flew to Denver. They were going to Steamboat Springs for a final walkthrough of their new vacation home: pick up the keys and head back to Houston on Sunday. Or so they thought.
Hurricane Harvey hit while the British-born couple was in Steamboat. Stranded without a flight, the Monks set up camp – literally – in the home Soda Mountain Construction had barely completed.
“A week later, we got a flight to Austin via Chicago and then had to rent a limo because there weren’t any hire cars left. From there, David took a jet ski and waded through the three feet of water that filled our house,” Lorraine says.
The couple saved what they could, picked up the dog and drove back to Steamboat to escape the chaos for one month. The new house in Barn Village quickly became their salvation.
The Monks previously owned a condo in Steamboat, and the family had been coming to ski for years. With David’s impending retirement, the couple opted to sell the condo and buy a second home, which they would eventually move into full time.
They opted for a plot in Barn Village and enlisted the design-build team at Soda Mountain Construction. Away from the buzz of the subdivision’s main street, the Monks’ home sits on a cul-de-sac alongside Fish Creek.
The couple wanted a change from their main home in Houston, which is traditional in style. “I knew I wanted something modern. It turned out better than I ever expected,” Lorraine says.
The three-story home was designed to maximize views of Mount Werner and the creek. “The two-angle design follows the subtle bend of the ridge, which benefits the house for two reasons: privacy and curb appeal,” says designer Travis Mathey. A tower blends the angles and houses a staircase between the first and second floors. Its distinct shape is echoed on the side profile of the south-facing deck. Mathey crafted a mix of Chief Cliff stone from Montana, steel, Douglas fir, cedar, charcoal accents and a colonial red roof for the exterior.
The modern mountain home encapsulates current trends, with exposed hot-rolled steel beams and baseboards, concrete and wood floor finishes, cascade countertops and sleek fixtures. Subtle design finishes cultivate the streamlined look of the interior. Acrylic paneling, which separates the floating staircase from the dining area, is mirrored on an opposing wall behind the wine storage nook. An opening in the second-floor wall – a last-minute addition – gives the impression of an airy loft with a birds-eye view of the kitchen and living space.
“We were able to make changes during construction, such as altering the height of a window or adding features as we went along,” says Chris Rhodes, Soda Mountain Construction’s co-director.
Natural light from the oversized windows and doors drenches the monochromatic hues of grays and creams on cabinetry and furnishings. An immense bi-fold door serves as a cooling system in summer and an entryway to outdoor living on the main-level deck. Hot-rolled steel posts support the deck and add an architectural feature visible from the lower-level patio. Giant boulders salvaged during construction shield the sunken hot tub. The outdoor spa is further enhanced by the tranquil sound of the creek flowing by.
The Monks’ home in Texas sits by a river. “That wasn’t intended to be copied in Steamboat, but we love having the water nearby,” Lorraine says. Despite restoring their Houston house, the Monks feel home is soon to become Steamboat in their Barn Village sanctuary.