We design distinctive new homes and renovations in the Bay Area, Wine Country and Tahoe. We work in the favorite architectural style of the client, creating inspirational homes that transform lives.
Orla graduated with a professional Bachelor of Architecture degree from a Royal Institute of British Architects accredited University in Europe and worked on modern custom residences. Her tutors in architecture school were RIBA gold medal winners Grafton Architects and O’Donnell/ Twomey Architects. She spent a lot of time as a child in Europe exploring stately homes and gardens with her Mom, a keen architecture enthusiast and her father, an engineer. They instilled in her a great love for classical architecture, design and landscaping. She focused on multi-family developments in London and institutional university buildings in Northern Europe prior to moving to the Bay Area.
During her varied career in both commercial and residential architecture she has worked on Laboratories, Aquariums, Museums, Athletic Facilities and Resorts. She worked with AIA gold medalist Joe Esherick of EHDD and Howard Backen of Backen Gillam on signature residences and wineries and was pivotal in the development of Solage, Calistoga for Auberge Resorts and Throckmorton Village. She has collaborated with the renowned Northern California modernist architect, Robert Hatfield, on a number of modern houses and developments. Hatfield’s first house for the future owner of Dwell inspired such a keen interest in modern architecture in his client that she founded the magazine. Orla set up her own firm in Sausalito, California, designing custom residential and commercial projects.
Orla Studios is a Marin County, California, based design practice. We are happy to work on projects anywhere. Have pencil, will travel.
Orla Studios is driven by a deep commitment to building as a material craft and a discipline grounded in ideas. With site climatic conditions and landscape as reference point and inspiration for the work, creating holistic, well-considered design solutions and human-centered experiences at many scales is the priority. The practice uses a process-oriented approach that allows design solutions to develop organically from the unique quality present at the site of each project. Clients are engaged throughout the design and construction process in a working environment attuned to their aspirations and infused with ease and clarity. Together, we work side-by-side with our contractors and consultants to foster a truly team-oriented process. From the exterior form and materials to the interior finishes, this flexible, collaborative design approach builds trust and yields spaces that profoundly impact client’s lives.
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