“Well, I was asked to make something between a cathedral and Japanese tea house,” Jim Hubbell said of the program for this space that was to be used for healing and renewal, as well as for sheltering guests.
Located on Mount Soledad with views of downtown and Mission Bay, this project goals were accomplished within a 30-foot diameter circle–the space allowed by the City of San Diego for auxiliary buildings in this La Jolla neighborhood. The structure contains a main room, bedroom, sitting room, and a bath. Up top is a balcony with views of the 100 acres of Kate Session Park below.
Nestled between Torrey pines and a mosaic-bottom pool, the owners say they only see pine trees and jacaranda from the balcony, making them feel they “don’t live in the city, although there is a neighbor 20 feet away.”
Three clerestory windows form the ribbed roof: two sliver and one stained glass. Magical patterns of color hit the walls and ceilings from the stained glass windows at night which the clients called their “underwater watercolor.”
“When people enter a building that is so far from the normal paradigm of buildings, it tells them that everything is possible. The move beyond their traditional boundaries…”~Owner
A photograph of this building became the cover of the Ocean Museum of Art’s catalogue for the James Hubbell Retrospective in 1998.
(Description excerpted from Kay Kaiser’s description in Hubbell Homes Tour 2004 booklet.)