Both Meier and Bruno love to entertain and share their "German house in a box" with friends and family. Meier says, "Hands down, the built-in Miele espresso maker was the best purchase in the kitchen. It has made thousands of cups of happiness."
Light cream and tan-strained granite countertops contrast with the dark cabinetry. Meier installed the stone tile that runs the entire height of the back wall. Above the cabinets is a collection of clay, metal and wood artwork picked up during the couple's travels.
All the black kitchen cabinetry came as part of the house package from Germany. Stainless steel appliances complete the modern kitchen design and include a GE refrigerator, Thermador stovetop, Bosch oven, Miele dishwasher and built-in coffee maker. Glass fronts on the lower hanging cabinets and island cabinets balance the heaviness of the black.
Large windows frame views of the mountains, complementing the minimalist decor throughout the home.
The heating system is located in the walls. Copper pipes were installed and framed out, and thick particleboard is attached to the frame and Sheetrock in the final layer. An on-demand hot-water unit supplies the whole house with heat and hot water. The utility bill has never exceeded $90.
From the main entry door, porcelain tile leads to a couch in the mudroom and laundry room area to the left, and solid beech-wood stairs on the right lead to the basement.
The surrounding hillsides reflect off the European glass shower wall in the spacious master bathroom.
The basement includes a minibar and lounge area on one side, and a guest bed on the other. Guests enjoy views of wandering wildlife and a tree-covered ravine.
All the windows came with large exterior metal blinds that open and close via remote control. In the summer, closing the blinds is enough to keep the interior cool; the home has no air conditioning.
The home features many decks made of durable German metal grates. In the winter, snow falls through the holes and eliminates the need to shovel. The metal doesn't require painting, staining or sealing, making it a very appealing material to endure Colorado's severe climates.
Just off the kitchen, a balcony seating area provides relaxing views of the Colorado mountains. Ever eager to start new projects, Meier and Bruno say they plan to downsize with their next house in a box, which will feature American additions like dormers in the bedroom and office areas.