Helen Thompson
Helen Thompson
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The main house and guest house at Flaming Goat Ranch near Dripping Springs are a stylish example of how function, high quality materials, and a connection with nature can achieve a luxurious experience–at least for those who consider great light, breezes wafting through the house, and beautifully proportioned spaces a luxury. The 3000-square-foot main house and 500-square foot guest house were designed by Austin architects Gary Furman and Philip Keil. Both are based on a simple rendition of a traditional ranch house, a local vernacular that’s powerfully nostalgic if not iconic.

Located close to a stand of oaks at the edge of a pasture, the house offers a view that opens towards the property’s water tank.

The east-west orientation of Flaming Goat allows for passive solar gain and day lighting from the low-E windows and clerestory (see next photo for a better view of the clerestory). On hot days, the owners just open the pocket doors, which make up the entire wall of the living area, and in come the breezes and maybe a dog or two.

The house is oriented to take advantage of the prevailing breezes and to minimize solar impact.

The kitchen is command central and is open to the porch where most of the casual dining takes place.

The view is better than watching television for diners seated at the island.

Concrete floors mean easy maintenance in this house that’s a getaway for a busy couple.

The pool is between guest house and main house.

The low site wall connects the ranch to the 500-square-foot guest house.

The light monitor, high in the hallway ceiling, runs the length of the hallway and wraps around the living and dining areas along the roofline. It’s a great energy conservation device: during the day, indirect light filters through which means there’s never a reason to turn lights on in the house until it’s dark.

In the master bedroom views take precedence, and if you are so lured by them there’s a door that’ll take you outside and to the pool.

The glass surround on the tub and shower stall allows light and the view to be prominent features in the his and hers master bath.

Deep overhangs and a wrap-around porch mean the owners can open up the house and let it breathe—a factor important, too, in old farmhouses in Central Texas.

Visitors don’t even have to wait for someone to open the front door before they sit down and get comfortable.





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