The Gamble House has been claimed by many to be one of the best crafted pieces of architecture in the US and we can see why! This unique creation was built in 1908 by Greene & Greene for David Gamble, second generation of Proctor & Gamble. The Gambles resided in the home until the 1960's when it was then gifted to the city of Pasadena and added to the National Registry of Historic Landmarks.
The home was designed as a winter home for David and his wife, Mary. The Gamble's worked closely with the architects to incorporate personal touches into the motif like the family crest.
Beautiful touches and designs were placed throughout the home like this one (pictured above). A stained glass window was placed in the front door picturing the tree of life. The motif was chosen to pay homage to the principal material used throughout the home, natural wood.
The architects felt it was important to let the wood speak in its own way and the result has often been called a "symphony of wood". The variety of materials used included Teak, Pine, Maple, Mahogany and Douglas Fir. An example is the entryway from the front door. As soon as a visitor walks in they are surrounded by the warmth and character of a multitude of woods from beams to wall paneling to flooring.
The architects wanted the use of the natural wood to almost seem intuitive as they displayed through this unique handrail. The handrail goes up with each stair, creating a beautiful and functional focal point.
Many believe a home like this can not be replicated due to the lack of fine woods like these. However, some businesses like Albany Woodworks specialize in providing these type of quality products, recycled from hundred year old buildings and given new life as flooring and building materials. Appreciation of craftsmanship like the Gamble House is what inspired and started companies like Albany Woodworks.