Backyard beach house: a Washington lakeside cabin is designed for instant decompressing.

THERE ARE NO LONG, BORING DRIVES When the Ohara family goes on


vacation. No plane tickets and nothing more than a tote bag to carry.

The family simply steps out the back door of their home and walks down

224 stairs to their beach house on the shores of Washington’s Lake

Sammamish Lake Sammamish is a lake 8 mi (13 km) east of Seattle in King County, Washington, United States. It lies to the east of Lake Washington and to the west of the Sammamish Plateau, and is 7 mi (11 km) long and 1.5 mi (2 km) wide. . “We use it three or four times a week in summer,”

says mom Hilary of the 850-square-foot retreat. “You can’t

even see it from the main house–you’re in a completely different

kind of environment down here.”


The Oharas decided to build their dream getaway on the property

where they already lived because they wanted to maximize their

spectacular lakeside setting. “We couldn’t even really get to

the beach before,” says Hilary, describing the steep, wooded

hillside separating the main house from the water. “We knew if we

didn’t build something down there, we wouldn’t use it.”


To achieve that away-from-it-all feel, the family focused on

decorating choices (and a lack of TV) to help distance the beach retreat

from the ‘5os-era home a mere 700 feet up the slope. “Our

beach house is crafted from the heart because we designed it from

scratch. We thought out every detail,” Hilary says. “I had to

stand in the outdoor shower while they built it to make sure I could see

the wakeboarders.”


The home’s open floor plan, large kitchen, and communal loft

bedroom with private sleeping nooks foster a laid-back atmosphere. A

focus on beachy blues, comfortable furniture, and easy-to-care-for

finishes creates a casual summer-camp mood. “I just wanted

something that felt like the right place to be,” says Hilary.


Get this beach home’s summer style

SEASIDE PALETTE (1) In computer graphics, a range of colors used for display and printing. See color palette.

(2) A collection of on-screen painting tools.

(3) A toolbar that contains a set of functions for any kind of application.

palette – colour palette

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