With her exuberant color palettes and daring gestures, Kristin Rocke has never been timid about making bold design statements. But every so often, an interior calls for a more nuanced approach. Such was the case for this new Park City vacation house located in the gated Promontory community. “The setting is extraordinarily quiet, both visually and audibly, so the design needed restraint,” says Rocke, principal of K. Rocke Design

Entry with canvas, custom built in cabinets and glass pivot door
A canvas by Utah artist Lenka Konopasek hangs on a sliding panel, part of the entry’s custom built-in cabinets crafted in walnut by Bradshaw Design. A large pivot door of glass connects the interior to the front of the home. Photo by Scot Zimmerman
Kristin Rocke, principal of K. Rocke Design
Kristin Rocke, principal of K. Rocke Design; Photo by Heather Nan

While many mountain homes can feel heavy and dark, this hillside haven draws from its sweeping vistas of land and sky for a luminous yet grounded décor. “It opens to the landscape with great views and light penetration,” Rocke explains. “The rooms feel as if they’re floating above the scenery.” The site’s slope played a key role. “The home is on a very steep site that dictated that the house be quite linear. As a result, it looks like it is growing out of the lot,” says Ron Lee, architectural designer. Rocke worked closely with the homeowners, Lee and contractor Mike McNulty to fashion an interior that is as dynamic and site-driven as the modern home itself. 

Great room with floating cage of lights and two-sided fireplace
The home was designed as a gathering place for its owners. In its great room, Rocke suspended a “floating cage of lights” by Alan Mizrahi above sitting areas connected by back-to-back sofas. The two-sided fireplace is clad with combed limestone panels, and the rift-oak floors derive their near-black hue from a non-toxic vinegar-and-steel-wool treatment that activates the dark color. Carefully curated furniture selections include mid-century Burma Bentwood armchairs, a Milo Baughman Wave chaise and a Sebastian Herkner Bell table that foster the great room’s engaging modern-meets-mountain décor. Photo by Scot Zimmerman

A pivoting front door opens to a spacious great room wrapped in floor-to-ceiling windows and crowned with a tongue-and-groove cedar ceiling. The overhead wood extends seamlessly to the underside of outdoor overhangs, blurring the line between indoors and out. This connection between in and out is one of many features inspired by mid-century modern design, including flat roofs, clearstory windows, exposed posts and beams and large areas of stone. “We wanted the flavor of mid-century without making it the entire meal,” Lee explains. Underfoot, wide-plank rift oak floors anchor the interior with a dramatic, near-black finish. Open living spaces fill the main level with shapely furnishings, hushed tones and striking features, including a modern stone fireplace, sculpture-like open staircase and handsome built-in cabinetry. “This house has a great balance between heft and lightness,” Rocke explains.

Staircase with floating landing, glass-and-steel railings and open treads
One of two staircases conceived by architectural designer Ron Lee features a floating landing, glass-and-steel railings and open treads with recessed LED lighting beneath. Shaggy paper hides, created by Utah artist Lenka Konopasek, hang on the wall and provide a modern twist on a traditional mountain décor element. Here, and throughout the home, Rocke dressed the walls in Benjamin Moore’s White Dove for its “slightly warm but non-yellow” hue. Photo by Scot Zimmerman
Antler chandelier, Live-edge wood table, Mohair  chairs, Double island, Back-painted glass, Custom cabinets
Dining room with mohair chairs, double island and modern antler chandelier
A modern take on traditional antler chandeliers, two polished stainless-steel fixtures hang above a live-edge wood table surrounded by chairs seated in mohair. Beyond, an entertaining kitchen features double islands and a gleaming backsplash of back-painted glass. Rocke designed the custom modern cabinets crafted by Carriage House Mill. Photo by Scot Zimmerman

The designer fashioned the great room’s monolithic two-sided fireplace with combed limestone panels dramatically set at varied depths. She used blocks of solid Nairobi limestone to form the massive hearth and mantel. “The hearth alone weighs 3,500 pounds,” she says. To offset the heroic feature, she suspended an ethereal cage of lights that appears to float above the room, illuminating and filling its volume without adding mass. “It has a weightlessness, like the space,” Rocke says. A palette of neutral tones—off-whites, grays and taupes with hints of brown, blue, aqua and eggplant—similarly advance the airy scheme. “Analogous colors make a space feel peaceful and serene,” she explains. 

Kristin Rocke, Master bedroom, Hobre-striped drpaeries, Textiles
A feathered hombre-striped fabric by Kravet frames the master bedroom’s expansive windows with a light-as-air pattern and billowy, semi-sheer draperies. Tranquil shades of blue green, layers of texture-rich textiles and breathtaking mountain views imbue the space with serenity and lux style. Photo by Scot Zimmerman

To infuse the tranquil décor with depth and dimension, the designer selected exquisite, texture-rich textiles. In the great room, for example, charred faux bois velvet dresses a pair of mid-century Gio Ponti wing chairs flanking the fireplace, lux mohair covers a vintage Milo Baughman Wave chaise and a tweedy weave garbs back-to-back sofas. “These tactile fabrics scream to be touched,” says Rocke, who also curated a compelling mix of wood furnishings and custom cabinetry that tempers the modern architecture with warmth and organic character. “The wood is dominant, and it helps make the rooms feel extremely comfortable,” she explains. 

Three-sided fireplace by Kristin Rocke
A three-sided fireplace—formed of banded, hot rolled steel and a limestone base—separates the master suite’s sitting and sleeping areas. Photo by Scot Zimmerman
Ice crystal chandelier
Resembling branches covered in sparkling ice crystals, the bedroom’s chandelier nods to the site’s snow-covered landscape. Photo by Scot Zimmerman

The adjoining dining room shares the two-sided fireplace and hosts a sapwood-edged table surrounded by mohair-seated chairs. Above, Rocke hung a pair of modern antler-shaped chandeliers, interpreted in stainless steel with lights inset at their pointed ends. “Two fixtures illuminate a long table more effectively than one,” she explains. The nearby kitchen, designed for entertaining, boasts double islands, a back wall of painted glass and transparent upper cabinets. Across the room, an open staircase designed by Lee features open, lighted treads and clean-lined, steel-and-glass railings. “All of this glass moves light throughout the space, making it look fresh and well lit,” the designer says. 

Gathering room designed by Kristin Rocke
Located on the upper level, a light-filled gathering room performs as a modern-day media and socializing space. Rocke enlivened the room with textiles featuring more spirited patterns and colors, including sheer drapery fabric from Romo. “It looks like an abstract watercolor painting,” Rocke says. “This is a great way to bring in color and a loose pattern that feels sophisticated.” Photo by Scot Zimmerman
Lower-level family room with Rotary dining table and Tatiana pottery
A chandelier by Moooi hangs above Julian Chichester’s Rotary dining table in the lower-level family room. The Tatiana pottery is from Rocke’s store Glass House and the art is by Mark England. Photo by Scot Zimmerman

Rocke didn’t use all of the goodies on the main level. Upstairs, she furnished the luxurious master suite with a channel-tufted bed and low-profile velvet chairs that allow stunning views and glorious light to flow unimpeded throughout the airy space. Here, and in an adjacent sitting area set beyond a three-sided fireplace, floor-to-ceiling, semi-sheer hombre draperies foster the suite’s dream-like décor. So too do plush blue-green rugs and sumptuous fabrics, as well as a custom chandelier and matching sconces resembling dazzling branches of ice crystals. “The space is so light and serene, it envelops you in comfort,” Rocke explains. 

Cristallo quartzite and porcelain tile master bathroom by Kristin Rocke
Cristallo quartzite tops the master bathroom’s floating walnut vanity. Rocke set the floor’s faux bois porcelain tile from European Marble & Granite in a striking geometric pattern. Photo by Scot Zimmerman

The master bathroom is equally indulgent, with a freestanding tub, floating walnut vanity, three-side glass shower (formed with privacy glass that changes from clear to fogged with a flip of a switch), sparkling Cristallo quartzite surfaces, and a partial glass ceiling that floods the spacious sanctuary in natural light. “Its like being inside an exquisite glow box,” Rocke says. More pronounced colors and laid-back comfort infuse the upstairs gathering/media room as well as the cozy family room and bar located on the home’s lower level. 

Three-side glass shower with privacy glass
A three-side glass shower is formed with privacy glass that changes from clear to fogged with a flip of a switch. Sparkling Cristallo quartzite surfaces frame the open, airy feature. Photo by Scot Zimmerman
Freestanding Mirabelle soaking tub in bathroom by Kristin Rocke
A broad window soaks a freestanding Mirabelle soaking tub in broad views and natural light. Photo by Scot Zimmerman

Being part of creating the spectacular home was, Rocke says with a smile, an absolute pleasure and privilege. “The owners were such lovely and trusting people to work with,” she says, “which brings a project like this to another level.” The result is not simply another new mountain house, but a dream escape where the interiors and architecture are as remarkable as the landscape and scenery that inspired them.  

Lower level family room with dark steel, Romo fabric and limestone fireplace
A limestone-clad fireplace anchors the cozy lower-level family room. Rocke mounted the TV on a dark steel backdrop, making its black screen all but disappear when not in use. A sheepskin-seated chair counteracts the bulk and straight lines of a large sectional upholstered in a “bulletproof” Romo fabric. Nearby, a bar area papered in Phillip Jeffries grasscloth showcases the color of the owner’s favorite drink, whiskey. Photo by Scot Zimmerman
Modern mountain home by architectural designer Ron Lee
“It looks like it is growing out of the lot,” says Lee, describing the hillside home. Expansive windows and broad decks open the modern house to its scenic mountain setting. Photo by Scot Zimmerman

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