Rousseau Design  |  Architecture and General Contracting Rousseau Design

Family Residence

Phoenix, Arizona

This home was designed and built for a couple, both members of pioneer Arizona families with an appreciation of their Western heritage. On a one-acre lot on the south side of Camelback Mountain, the site offered a dramatic red-granite setting that evokes prehistoric land forms. Because of the difficulties of building on it, this steep, rocky hillside lot had changed hands several times since the creation of the subdivision in the early 1970s. Built in 2001, it was the last lot in the subdivision to be finished.

Exterior and interior walls of exposed concrete masonry units are made from recycled bricks, and concrete and cork floors contribute to sustainability. A combination of industrial elements (concrete block, exposed structural-steel beams, copper plumbing pipes used as handrails), along with stained tongue-and-groove sheathing on the walls and the use of architectural salvage (for plumbing fixtures, door hardware and lighting fixtures) give this home the feeling of a traditional territorial home.


To provide open views of the stunning red rocks at the head of Camelback Mountain, power lines and poles that supplied neighbors were relocated to comply with both municipal and utility-company regulations. The rerouting process involved trenching through solid rock to put conduit two feet underground and entomb it in concrete.


Phoenix Home & Garden, September 2002: “Perfect Blend: A masterful mix of materials flavors a mountainside kitchen.”