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Modern, Rustic Mountain Home
A lively mix of styles creates a feel-good vibe in the Utah mountains
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When Julianne Phillips and Marc Gurvitz escape Los Angeles’s sprawl for their getaway high on a peak above Park City, Utah, they take along more than just hiking gear, skis, and Marc’s 11-year-old son, Jackson—they take their style, too. Theirs is a breezy, welcoming and oh-so-casual world that glides oceanside to mountainside as effortlessly as a slope-style snowboarder, thanks to designer Trip Haenisch.
Haenisch has a long history of working with Marc, who is a manager and producer with high-profile clients like Bill Maher and Jim Belushi. The designer created homes for Marc even before he and Julianne became a couple nine years ago, so he knew Marc’s taste in modern art and furnishings and how he liked to live. What actress Julianne appreciates is Haenisch’s effort to blend her style into the mix. “Trip wanted a real collaboration,” she says. “He was always asking for my input, and he’s sensitive to the male-female dynamic. He wanted to be sure I wasn’t railroaded by a male point of view.”
What came out of the trio’s combined perspectives is a place that’s mountain cabin in name only. Here, rustic touches like the twig chandelier in the foyer, an antler-legged footstool in the living room, and birch-bark beds in the bunk room are placed against a sophisticated backdrop of modern furnishings, avant-garde art, and energetic color.
A vibrant painted chest draws the eye to the forever landscape outside tall windows.
Photography: Michael Garland
Produced by Jenny Bradley
Interior design: Trip Haenisch, Trip Haenisch & Associates, 658 N. Crescent Heights Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90048-2110; 323/651-4445, triphaenisch.com.
The site Julianne and Marc chose for their new home is at the highest point of Salt Lake City’s Promontory neighborhood, with views so enticing that Julianne says they find themselves going there year-round. “You know what they say about mountain towns—the winters bring you, but the summers bring you back. We get so much light and a wonderful breeze, and then there’s all the wildlife, including elk and deer, walking through our yard. It’s heaven.”
The house blends naturally into the mountain terrain.
The couple’s primary home in Malibu is a shingled Dutch Colonial full of misty light grays and blues, but for their mountain retreat they wanted a different palette to counter the days when winter skies turn gray. “We asked Trip to bring in color to add warmth,” says Julianne. To Haenisch, that meant red.
“Red is fiery and exciting,” the designer says, “but I especially like it next to the light wood we used everywhere here. When I came into the project, the house was half-built and they were going to use a lot of heavy, dark paneling. I said, ‘No, you want it blonder, you want it bright and fresh.’ You can bang red off a neutral palette very effectively.” From a crimson-painted front door, to the vibrant living room dhurrie, to the kitchen’s zesty light fixture, Haenisch’s theory clearly holds water.
Muted furnishings, like the curved settee and the round woven rug, complement the phenomenal view.
Hanging light: Arte de Mexico, artedemexico.com.
A "Good Luck" horseshoe greets guests in the entry and is a nod to traditional Western themes.
Haenisch says mixing textures is as important as being clever with color and shape. Here he masterfully combined leather with wood, stone, and woven pieces to build a cozy, feel-good vibe. “I tried to use things that are respectful of the mountains,” Haenisch explains, “but the twist is the modern element. A tree stump table might be predictable, except here it’s in a living room with a sleek Danish coffee table.
The bright red rug in the living room inspired the lively shade of crimson found in every room. A sampling of Marc Gurvitz’s collection of black-and-white photos highlights a casual arrangement on the mantel.
Sofas (custom); pair of chairs (custom); chandelier (custom): Trip Haenisch & Associates, triphaenisch.com.
Floor lamp (1930s brass reading lamp): Holly-wood at Home, hollywoodathome.com.
Bench beside chair: owner’s collection.
Bench fabric (“Turkoman Stripe” #R0488): Robert Kime, robertkime.com.
A stool with antler legs is covered in a striped fabric from Robert Kime that reflects all the colors in the room.
“The house looks collected because it’s filled with things you wouldn’t see together every day,” Haenisch notes. Like the oversized standing lamp in the dining room that takes the place of a chandelier.
Bowls on the dining room table pick up on both the house’s palette and its design ethos—rustic on the outside, modern on the inside.
“If this were an all-white kitchen, red would be way too sweet,” Haenisch says, “but against barn-wood walls, it really works.”
Marc and Julianne love having guests, and the kitchen is the center of the action. Haenisch took the wood up and onto the ceiling to make the room feel bigger, and then found a vintage French industrial cart and designed the kitchen’s island around it. “I love that this cart has drawers where you can store vegetables, onions, and potatoes,” he says. “It’s great looking, but it’s also practical.”
A double pendant light from The Urban Electric Co. lends a splash of red, and barn-wood walls warm the feel of the marble-topped island built around a vintage French factory cart.
Cabinetry (Shaker style in Knotty Alder): custom.
Cabinetry hardware (“Mayfair Cup Pull”/Rust, Tuscany Collection, and “Mushroom Knob”/Rust, Somerset II Collection): Top Knobs, topknobs.com.
Countertop: Carrara marble.
Pendant lights (“Carlyn Double” #DC-1501, by Darryl Carter): Urban Electric, urbanelectricco.com.
Range; range hood: Viking, vikingrange.com.
Farm sink: Franke, frankeksd.com.
Bar stools (discontinued): Restoration Hardware, rh.com, for similar (“Allen Stool”): Ballard Designs, ballarddesigns.com.
Bar cart: Cleveland Art, clevelandart.com.
Kitchen Back Wall
The back wall of the kitchen has the cool, rustic vibe fitting of a mountain home. An antique hutch anchors the corner, but the pièce de résistance is the red-handled ladder.
“It’s a retreat within a retreat—a place where Marc can read scripts or take a private phone call,” says designer Trip Haenisch. John Himmel armchairs add texture against sleek wood walls.
Sconces (“Bryant Sconces” #TOB2002, by Thomas O’Brian): Circa Lighting, circalighting.com.
Lounge chairs (Handwoven Rope Collection): John Himmel, johnhimmel.com, through David Sutherland, davidsutherlandshowroom.com.
Lounge-chair cushions (“Aqua Velvet II”/Kona #250/07): Holly Hunt, hollyhunt.com.
Round table (custom); ottoman (custom): Trip Haenisch & Associates, triphaenisich.com.
Striped ottoman fabric (“Mali Stripe”/Red #JW3002, by Jasper): Michael Smith Inc., michaelsmithinc.com.
Hanging light (“Driftwood Chandelier,” by Dan Marty): discontinued.
Blond barn-wood walls reappear in the guest bathroom. The industrial light fixtures reference the rustic aspects of cabin life.
The game room/movie area downstairs is all about Foosball and kids. A playful horse photograph and a red cage light from Dare Studio reinforce the upbeat mood in a room that’s all about fun.
Rugged shapes mix with feminine colors in this room with a view. A masculine faux-bois bed designed by Haenisch is dressed in lighthearted purple, pink, and yellow. The bedside table harmonizes with wood walls and a leather headboard.
Drapery (linen, in taupe): Robert Allen, robertallendesign.com.
Bed (custom); headboard leather (custom); area rug (custom): Trip Haenisch & Associates, triphaenisch.com.
Wing-chair fabric (“Capri”/Pink, Plum #2317, colorway discontinued): Rose Tarlow-Melrose House, rosetarlow.com.
Birch-bark bunk beds increase the home’s sleeping capacity and add rustic charm. A striped carpet from Decorative Carpets pulls the room’s warm palette together.
Along with all the discussion of good design, Julianne wanted to be sure they were creating a home that was inviting and livable for friends and family, especially for Jackson. “What I love about Jackson’s room is that he can grow into it. It’s not too juvenile.” Like the fun "Starburst" wallpaper from Hollywod at Home -- exuberant but not childish.
Julianne and Marc credit Haenisch for their home’s dazzling design, but he’s just as insistent that it only works because it was a group effort. “My worst clients are the ones who trust me too much, the ones who say, ‘Just do it.’ Then the house is all about me and not about them,” he says. “Julianne is the sweetest person and Marc is very, very funny. Julianne understands the beauty of a table with a bit of wear and tear, Marc not so much. It was fun to find the balance.”
Here, Julianne Phillips is pictured with her German shepherd, Dexter.
The Sidecar, price available upon request from Moore & Giles [1-800-737-0169]
This beautifully crafted bar cart, The Sidecar by Moore and Giles, is a great way to store liquor, glassware, bar tools, and anything else needed to complete your own miniature bar. The cart, made of Virginia black walnut, birch, leather, aluminum, and brass, is wheeled to make sure the party can travel with you. Perfect for drink-lovers without the space for a full bar.