Plum Street Remodel: Before

Plum Street Remodel: Before

May 01, 2019

A Contemporary Renovation in San Diego Focuses on Coastal Views & Indoor-Outdoor Living

A “prime location and a spectacular view” was what initially attracted this California family to the Plum Street House – a midcentury property located near San Diego’s scenic Point Loma with stunning views of the skyline. Originally built in the 1960s, the family saw the property’s ultimate potential, but realized that it needed considerable updates in order to meet the needs of their active, modern lifestyle.

Luckily, they were introduced to Will & Fotsch Architects, Inc., an experienced California firm that only accepts new clients via referrals. The family and the firm quickly hit it off, granting the architect a creative license to renovate their 3,700-square-foot home.

To achieve the desired design functionality, aesthetic and value for Plum Street’s renovation, challenges had to be met and goals had to be set.
Design firm principal Andy Fotsch further explained:

“Challenge one was to determine the best floor plan to create a comfortable series of spaces for living and entertaining. We wanted keep as much of the existing structure as possible, while making the greatest positive impact.”

“The second challenge was to determine a style that would update the house, yet work with the overall massing and structure. In San Diego, there’s no consistent architectural style. The look of each home depends on when it was built and who built it. If someone from the East Coast was building a house in California, they may have built a Cape Cod style home. Someone from the Southwest may have built a ranch style home. Someone building more recently may choose a more contemporary look.”

Overall “the remodel was done as surgically as possible to frame views and provide a comfortable home for a life of casual entertaining,” said Fotsch. “We really focused on opening it up and making it feel more connected.”


Tour the Plum Street Home – Before

The exterior of the 1960s home as it appeared prior to the renovations.


The kitchen was in the center of the house, interrupting the flow between the living and dining rooms.


Originally, a screened-in porch was connected to the living room, but it didn’t allow a natural flow to the pool or deck area.


The former dining room was dark and cramped but served as the only access point to the front courtyard area. Additionally, the front entry had a solid front door and decorative sidelights that matched the homes dated décor.


The layout had quirks of a midcentury home with spatial organization that fell short of today’s functional demands.


The existing pool was two levels below the living space and felt disconnected from the house.

“It’s one of my favorite views from any project that I’ve worked on. This project is all about the views," Fotsch noted. “It overlooks an international airport, the downtown San Diego city skyline, an active military base complete with fighter jets and aircraft carriers, the Coronado Bay bridge, the ocean and the marina – all set against a backdrop of the hills of Mexico.”

Continue Reading – Plum Street Remodel: After >
See why Fotsch selected products exclusively from Kolbe’s VistaLuxe® Collection to showcase these spectacular views in this complete home renovation. Also scroll through the Plum Street ‘after’ photos showing the transformation into the modern, coastal style home that it is today.


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