SANF November 2016 : Page 48

THE LOOKER HABITAT The homeowners painted their front door a sunny shade of yellow to warm up the contemporary gray facade. Open risers and a steel-mesh rail allow sunlight to filter through the front stairway into the rest of the house. An avid cook, owner Ching-Yee Hu requested a total kitchen overhaul. The walnut cabinetry and shelving are by Henrybuilt. haul. It was an ambitious ask. “The roof came off,” McElroy says. “We low-ered floors, raised ceilings, and moved walls.” Although the resulting struc-ture is technically the same Glen Park residence, says Hu, after such a stud-scraping remodel, “I tell people we Ching-Yee Hu and Gary Orenstein spent eight years living with their two young daughters in what they darkly story Glen Park abode that appeared spacious from the street but felt com-ically cramped inside. “There was absolutely no flow—it drove us crazy,” says Hu. “You had to climb two flights of stairs just to reach the front door, and when you opened it, you spilled immediately into the dining room.” Fed up, they hired architect Tom McElroy and designer Marina Kruger of McElroy Architecture to give their house of quirks a space-making over-kept the address but rebuilt the house.” Luckily, Hu and Orenstein gave McElroy and his team free rein. wanted something comfortable and unpretentious—not a showpiece.” While the home’s former ’90s-era finishes were “very Best Western,” recalls McElroy, the new design is unabashedly contemporary, all the way down to the custom floating stair-way bordered by perforated steel. The house’s previous narrow kitchen was so tiny that Hu and Orenstein joked it was like living on a boat. An avid cook and the founder MELISSA KASEMAN A cramped Glen Park “clown house” loses its maddening quirks but holds on to a few surprises. By Lauren Murrow 48 San Francisco | November 2016 Behind the Yellow Door called their “clown house”: a three-“We’re low-key people,” says Hu. “We

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