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Inside the idyllic Bel Air home of Rios Clementi Hale Studios’ Mark Rios

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The architect’s first home for himself

Courtesy of Architectural Digest

Mark Rios, a founding partner of the architecture firm Rios Clementi Hale Studios, and his husband were living in a midcentury modern on a Bel Air hillside that was "just about ideal"—except for the fact that it was sinking.

Seeing an opportunity where others might see disaster, Rios and his husband, fertility doctor Guy Ringler, decided to raze the home they'd lived in for 15 years and build anew on the 1-acre property, says Architectural Digest.

Seen from the front, the house is windowless. But from the back, the residence is an array of floor-to-ceiling glass pocket doors intended to open up the space, maximize the views, and connect to the house’s outdoor areas, which include a rooftop screening room and terrace.

Rios Clementi Hale Studios has designed projects ranging from the Columbia Square complex in Hollywood to sleek small-lot homes in Los Feliz, but this project is the first time Rios had ever designed a home for himself.

Courtesy of Architectural Digest

“I was more experimental and did more in the detailing with this home than I’ve done for past clients,” Rios told AD.

More detailing indeed: Rios says he went through 50 plans before deciding on the right one, which incorporates elements of Japanese architecture and design. “The library, in particular,” Rios says, “was fashioned after a room in Kyoto, using heavy, dark timbers. And the spa resembles old ryokans I’ve visited in Japan.”

“So many fashionable houses are filled with beautiful objets d’art that scream, ‘Look at me! I’m wonderful!’ These houses have a lot going on. Our house is the opposite. We’ve kept it simple,” Rios said.

For more photos, head over to Architectural Digest.