Given the rare prospect of building a new home on a vacant lot in an historical neighborhood, my husband and I had the opportunity to collaborate with Amy Bell/AXIS Architecture on our home/business/bed and breakfast in Livingston, Montana. In addition to constraints placed on us by our budget, we were also dedicated to constructing a “forever home” that would serve as our business, complement the neighborhood, grow with us, maximize efficiency and technology and accommodate a long list of “must haves” that we thought might be out of reach. Amy was able to work alongside us and steer our project in a direction that resulted in a cohesive, polished structure with the capability to evolve and grow as time and money permits. During our first meeting, we came to the table with concepts and designs aplenty… the accumulation of years of thinking, planning and dreaming. Amy was able to sift through our list of ideas and details and put them together in a way that told a story that was beautifully unified. I remember the first set of elevations coming to us via email and the delight I felt… thinking… “THAT could be our home”.  After a year of construction, we took up residence during the spring of 2015, and I get that same feeling every time I walk through the door.

This was our first adventure in building a structure of this size (6,000+ square feet). It felt daunting at times. Fortunately, we made the decision in the beginning to work with an architect that would bring experience to the table. We learned volumes throughout the process of construction. One of the most important: a good architect will pay for herself.

Donald Zanoff, Client