Mission, Malibu Hills

A private chapel complex set within a twenty-acre landscape in the Santa Monica Mountains was programmed to provide areas of worship, meditation, ceremony, processionals, and renewal. An existing chapel was renovated into an event space that invokes the memory of the former church with its vaulted ceiling of oak tree canopies. Alcoves that flank the lawn provide private spaces.

The new chapel is reminiscent of an early California mission and overlooks a landscape with gardens that can be used for quiet contemplation or large gatherings. The plant palette consists of native materials and mimics the chaparral that surrounds the property. The site walls and a large entrance fountain have been built using locally found sandstone to minimize the visual impact of the new construction within the natural environment. The spaces flow seamlessly from one end of the site to the other, creating the desired effect of knitting the project into its location.

Photography: Marion Brenner