photography by Jenny Elia Pfeiffer
Melissa Pfeiffer, a creative director living in Oakland Hills, CA, owns one of the most endearing rentals on Airbnb.@inthehillsofoakland is the kind of place you rent for way more than a weekend. It’s a serene, minimal haven that will give creatives space to let their minds wander, and city-weary souls a bit of stillness and respite.
HOW DID THIS STUDIO PROJECT COME TO BE? WHAT MADE YOU DECIDE TO CREATE THIS AIRBNB-ABLE SPACE?
Initially it was the need for a nicer spot for out of town guests and family members. The main house which is separate from the studio is perfect for our family of 4, but not great for extra space when we have visitors, so we decided to renovate the existing studio. It’s a bonus that we get to share it with Airbnb guests from all over the world.
WHAT WAS YOUR INSPIRATION OR GOAL FOR THE DECOR?
The main house is a mid century modern home built in 1956, which is primarily mahogany wood paneling with cinder block, concrete floors, and floor to ceiling windows. Overall the color palette is very warm and almost entirely wood based. The goal for the studio space was to have a crisp, bright and clean space for family and guests to take in the views and natural surroundings. The furniture and findings are all from our collecting over the years and prototypes of my husband’s work (pfeifferlab.com) we didn’t have to purchase much of anything besides a bed and few accessories.
WHAT DO YOU LOVE MOST ABOUT THIS SPACE?
The white! I was craving a white space and have for years, it is so peaceful and clean. I love that I can add hits of colors and build upon a clean white foundation.
WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE MEMORY OF THE DESIGN PROCESS?
This space has had so many functions over the years. We have transitioned from offices, play space, photo studio to guest quarters. The favorite memory was seeing it come together in the end and everyone pitching in to complete the process. We all had our input, including my two children who grew up playing, creating, and making in this space. It was sentimental for them.
WHAT WAS THE BIGGEST CHALLENGE?
We had to add an eave extension over the front door and entry so that rain and water didn’t hit the door and threshold. . .it came out beautifully and really looks as though it should have been there all along.
WHAT IS THE BEST REACTION OR COMMENT YOU’VE HAD TO THIS SPACE?
The views! Everyone loves that it is so open and bright, everything is within reach, but private and it is quiet and peaceful.
WHO IS THE IDEAL GUEST FOR THIS SPACE?
Creative types that love design, the outdoors, and joie de vivre!
WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE DECOR ITEM HERE? HAVE YOU REPLICATED ANY OF THIS IN YOUR OWN HOME?
There are quite a few things that overlap from the main house into the studio. We tend to move things around and see how they work in different spaces. With a penchant for collecting and always making/building we have an abundance of useful design objects. Nothing is incredibly precious, but a lot of the items are vintage family heirlooms and designed prototypes pieces by my husband. We want our guests to feel at home, be inspired and to share our lifestyle and love for design, so it naturally flows into the studio as well.
Rent this space here!