The Blundell House built by Brentwood local redwood with special air-insulation technique
(Image credit: TBC)

Also called the Blundell House, this is an unusual guest house. Built in Brentwood, California, for an anthropologist based in Asia, the extension was intended as a live-and-work space for when the owner teaches at the UCLA. It hosts visiting Buddhist scholars and showcases the anthropologist’s collection of artefacts. Named for its special air-insulation technique, it uses 
a void between the wood frame and the plastic skin as thermal protection. Using solar panels and local redwood, the house also served as a prototype for the owner’s other properties in Sri Lanka and Taiwan, and is fully adaptable to local construction methods and materials. ‘The most exciting aspect of the project was to design the same structure for three different locations, for specific climates, economies and materials,’ says architect Francois Perrin.

The elevated wooden frame includes a giant floor-to-ceiling bookshelf and ample workspace, while a loft area hosts the study and bedroom. The main ground level is a flexible space for tea ceremonies or meditation and the large deck provides an ideal afternoon hangout. Above all, Air House is a guest house with a conscience.


Francois Perrin, 1511 Portia Street, Los Angeles


Ellie Stathaki is the Architecture & Environment Director at Wallpaper*. She trained as an architect at the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki in Greece and studied architectural history at the Bartlett in London. Now an established journalist, she has been a member of the Wallpaper* team since 2006, visiting buildings across the globe and interviewing leading architects such as Tadao Ando and Rem Koolhaas. Ellie has also taken part in judging panels, moderated events, curated shows and contributed in books, such as The Contemporary House (Thames & Hudson, 2018), Glenn Sestig Architecture Diary (2020) and House London (2022).