How Ellis Builds transformed an outdated fixer-upper into a prize Spanish Hills masterpiece.

Situated just southeast of Boulder, the Spanish Hills neighborhood is known for its unrivaled views of the front range, back range and beyond. For those lucky enough to call this beautiful locale home, it’s all about the vista. For one Spanish Hills family, however, their love of their neighborhood was tempered by the unfortunate design of their 1960’s house. Enter: Ellis Builds. The Boulder-based firm had done — and continues to do — a number of projects in Spanish Hills, and they added this classic remodel to their repertoire in the fall of 2016 with the help of architectural and interior design services provided by MQ Architecture.

As Ellis Builds’s Founder and President David Ellis recounts, the project boasts a classic remodel story: the family adored their location, but their home simply did not meet their needs. The old house — which had previously been haphazardly renovated — had small windows throughout, the master bedroom was hidden at the back of the house, the kitchen was small and outdated, and the garages were undersized and had no mud room. The family wanted to reconfigure their home in order to capitalize on their stunning views, to gain more functional space to support their growing family and to create an outdoor living space where they could enjoy Boulder’s beautiful summer nights.

The tricky part of the project, Ellis notes, was thoroughly revamping the home while staying within the client’s budget. They could not “throw money” at the project, but had to be smart and resourceful, fully utilizing the old house to best support the new one. Luckily for the homeowners, Ellis Builds prides themselves on working with their clients from day one, meticulously crafting realistic budgets and sticking to them faithfully.

The remodel reshaped what was once an underutilization of Spanish Hills real estate into a stunning space ideally suited to embrace the home’s location and provide the family with the functional space they craved. The top level of the house was gutted and rebuilt, this time with grand, vaulted ceilings with exposed glulam beams soaring high above an airy, open living area. The great room is surrounded with floor-to-ceiling windows, creating what Ellis likens to a “personal veranda,” taking in incredible views from every angle. The rebuild also included a new mudroom and two-car garage, as well as the conversion of the family’s old living room into an expansive master suite with a private outdoor seating area.

The most notable addition to the home, however, is undoubtedly the grand outdoor living space situated atop the family’s new garage. Boasting an exposed steel beam structure, metal handrails and a checkerboard wood pallet deck, the space is, in Ellis’s words, “very dramatic.” Finally, their clients had a space to gather with family and friends to truly capitalize on the jaw-dropping location of their (now) dream home.

When the time came for the Ellis Builds team to pack up their tools and call it a day, the newly minted “mountain modern” masterpiece featured four bedrooms and 3.5 bathrooms; a once dated home transformed into a beautiful, functional Spanish Hills showpiece.

Get The Look:

  1. Horizontal Thermory Siding adorns the exterior of the home’s front entryway, as well as the walls of the outdoor living space

  2. Custom doors courtesy of TruStile imbue the home with a unique, modern charm

  3. Marvin windows allow full access to Boulder’s breathtaking views

  4. Custom cabinets from The Artisan Shop bring the revamped kitchen to life

  5. The home boasts stunning 6” European Rustic White Oak hardwood flooring throughout

  6. Bison IPE 2’x2’ Wood Pavers provide the stunning deck floor of the family’s outdoor living space