Inside a Compact California Weekend Getaway Home by Local Studio

At just 750 square feet, the home in Joshua Tree, California was just big enough for a Los Angeles couple to envision an ideal escape from the hustle and bustle of the city. They didn’t want to expand the footprint, so starting with the original one-room floor plan, they worked with an architect to configure the space as a two-bedroom, one-bath home. Then they enlisted Paul and Becky Heinz of Hudson Valley, New York-based Local Studio for the interiors. Partners in work and life, the couple brought their emphasis on quality materials and local arts and crafts to the project. The scope of their work included specifying all materials and details.

The compact space, which includes a great room in addition to the bedrooms and bath, offered opportunities to take advantage of the privacy afforded by the remote surroundings, with no neighbors in sight for miles. Because it was intended as a space for relaxation and enjoyment, the aesthetic needed to be relaxed. The firm chose concrete floors for ease and practicality and solid surfaces in the kitchen for quick cleanup. The couple’s decision to make the home into a short-term rental informed the choices on furnishings. They selected pieces combining visual appeal and high durability to withstand extensive use. Open shelves feature found objects, books, and a record player to give the space a lived-in feel.

For the bathroom, an expansive window welcomed the stunning mountain scenery into the space. The lack of neighbors means no window coverings were necessary, so the views can be enjoyed unimpeded from any part of the room. The designers chose light paint and handmade wall tile with subtle variations to frame the view. A stone-topped vanity continues the connection to nature.

The home’s limited footprint means the bathroom is small. However, the designers found an ideal solution for the tub in Hydro Systems’ Opal. “The soft shape and slight angle made it extremely comfortable to use,” they report. “We loved the material for how organic it seemed and it played nicely with the handmade tiles.” Opal’s slim silhouette allows for a fit that doesn’t overwhelm the other elements in the space and leaves enough room so that the area doesn’t feel cramped. The designers added a ceiling-mounted shower curtain and a rain-head to allow for the tub to also function as a shower. Another feature of the small space is a glass door leading to an outdoor shower.

A limited space doesn’t limit options when it comes to incorporating a freestanding tub into a bath. Hydro Systems has options for a range of sizes and design considerations.