Star of the Sea Church

Gualala, California

Situated in a region that has been heavily logged, the design of the church pays particular attention to the use of wood. The church was built using small dimensioned lumber leaving the structure exposed to give full appreciation to the choice of materials and their contribution to the integrity of the building.

Set on the crest of a wooded terrace above the Pacific Ocean and Highway One, the design for the Star of the Sea Church appreciates the sanctity of the site's natural beauty. The primary orientation of the church is south towards the beach and rocks, which provide a backdrop for the altar. The axis continues through the lobby to an entry porch featuring a large symbolic baptismal rock. The rear walls of the church open completely offering graceful access to a pleasant outdoor space.