Saddle Peak House is a breathtaking modern vacation villa in Topanga Canyon above Los Angeles, overlooking the Santa Monica Mountains and the Pacific Coast.
What is the story behind Grand Lake Cabin, what was your inspiration to create it?
A couple of years ago, we lost my mum to cancer. She was passionate about real estate, investments, travel and family time. So when she left us some money, we decided that creating a holiday home and investment property would be something she would love.
We started looking for places and fell in love with the Grand Lake area. It’s really charming. In Colorado, there are a lot of lake towns, but many have become touristy and overdeveloped. They don’t have that small-town charm anymore.
Initially, we weren’t finding much in the area, although there was this one listing that we kept overlooking as the real estate agent had only put one photo of the garage. Eventually, we asked to do a Facetime tour and as soon the agent walked into the living room, I wanted to make an offer. I could immediately see our family there, playing games beside the fireplace.
When we bought it in December 2020, it was really rough around the edges. But we could see how, with a bit of love, it could become a magical place. We put a lot of time into it and made it exactly how we wanted it, with heated floors and high-end details in the bathroom and kitchen. I believe that you should do something right the first time. In that way, you’re not spending money twice.
We have two kids and my dad who is almost 90 lives with us. So it was important that we created a place that was comfortable for everyone. It was intended as a special place for us but also a special place for travellers who like to travel as we do. Our first guests stayed in late April 2021 and we go up there every Christmas. The kids go sledding, we roast marshmallows around the fireplace. We love it a lot.
How would you describe the atmosphere and the interior design of Grand Lake Cabin?
We both work in healthcare but I am passionate about interior design and decorated our main home. When my mum got sick, we converted our garage into a living space for my dad and this was my first chance to try my hand at interior design from the ground up. We ended up winning an interior design award!
With Grand Lake Cabin, it was so fun to try out all these different things and really be creative. Except for the exposed logs, everything needed to be repainted and every countertop/faucet/light fitting needed to be replaced. It was important that we maintained the charm of the cabin and its rustic feel while also ensuring it had everything you’d need or want.
I would describe it as "comfortable luxury". When I walk in there, I feel cosy and relaxed. All of the details are high-end but you don’t feel like you can’t touch anything. Parents can relax without worrying about the kids running around.
A lot of our guests say that they spend entire days at the house. It’s a destination in itself. The best is when a guest checks in and within minutes, they send us a message saying: “This is so much better than I expected” or “Every detail has been thought of”. One guest said: “I can’t even imagine how long it took to get every detail in this house right, but it’s all perfect”.
To you personally, what is so special about Grand Lake Cabin?
The amount of love we put into it (we are so proud!) and the amount of love we have got out of it. Everywhere we look, there are details we remember creating. It has been such a special place for us to build core memories with our family.