Montana home residence cowgirl magazine

When gifted artist and architect Jerry Locati and his wife Kari bought twenty-four acres of hayfields just seven minutes from downtown Bozeman, their dream was to build a generational-friendly compound that would be a welcoming indoor/outdoor nest for themselves and their two sons Ryan and Daniel. The couple envisioned a residence that would optimize the opportunities for social and family gatherings while retaining quiet and serene spaces for  personal relaxation. With the fortuitous presence of high ground water, one of the first endeavors was to dig ponds, ingeniously utilizing the pond spoils to construct a berm around the property. Five to six hundred trees were also planted, adding to the feeling of privacy.

The structure itself is 11,000 square feet, its size and character dictated by the desire to include a guest house, great room, bedroom suites and master suites, all connected by indoor/outdoor living spaces designed to be used year round. A lake house and barn were also added.    

In constructing the different areas, Locati employed the use of natural materials in both indoor and outdoor spaces: Chief Cliff fieldstone (a gorgeous, mountain stacked stone native to the Flathead Valley of Montana), Oklahoma Stone, recycled fir timbers, light ash, wide planked oak and knotty alder. Amanda Heys, who heads Locati’s in-house Interior Design Team, contributed her expertise in the selection of fabrics as well as furnishings, some of which were custom designed by the firm’s team. Heys’ instincts for layering and her choices of sumptuous leathers, rich silks, damasks and soft chenilles—all in natural earthy or sandy colors—add warmth, depth and elegance to the home interiors and exterior living rooms. Treasures discovered by the Locatis in the antique markets of Bar Le Duc in France contribute to an aristocratic, timeless ambiance to this stunning Montana residence.

A hammered-steel mantel atop the stone hearth in the great room is complemented by a custom made fireplace screen and irons by Bar Mill in Big Timber, Montana. The antique armoire to the left of the hearth has been converted into an entertainment center. Leather sofa with striped cushions is from Stanford Furniture in Claremont, North Carolina. Chenille chairs are from JJ Customs Upholstery in Los Angeles; the richly hued rug was sourced from Mansour Rugs, also in Los Angeles. The side table was found in France.

An antique French chandelier adds interest to the kitchen nook while an inviting settee encourages a leisurely breakfast. The Hancock and Moore chair and ottoman upholstered in Pindler and Pindler chenille lend an air of both elegance and ease. Granite countertops top knotty alder cabinets by Mountain High Woodworks in Bozeman. The windows and doors are by Architectural Traditions of Tucson, Arizona.

The dining room is accented by an antique, hand-carved credenza. Benches at the head and foot of the dining table were designed to mimic the Ebanista chairs on either side. The vibrant colored rug is by Alanya Carpet Gallery in Bozeman.

The wine room below the kitchen creates the ambiance of a traditional cellar while the Asian cabinet adds an eclectic feel to dining area. Chairs are from Furniture Your Way in Dallas Texas. Chair fabric and banquette back fabric are from Pindler and Pindler, the leather is from Moore and Giles. The table is from KDC Custom Wood Works. A faux grizzly throw drapes the banquette!

The master bedroom suite was designed to have the highly finished and layered feel of a Ritz Carlton suite. An elaborate canopy crest over the Marge Carson bed was custom designed by the Locati team, with an interior of solid silk and an outer layer of silk damask. The headboard fabric is Corragio. The spectacular floor vase was found at Maitland-Smith of North Carolina. Jerry and Amanda designed the whimsical coffee table pillows. The seamless carpet was created specifically for the suite. An antique chandelier polishes off the opulent room.

Indoor/outdoor living spaces best exemplify the Locati’s strong connection to the land and the exhilaration found in enjoying nature all year round. Heaters in the ceiling and generous Lloyd Flanders chairs meant for multiple cuddlers ensure that the view and fresh air can be enjoyed even in the midst of winter. When the sun beckons, Smith and Hawkins Adirondacks lure loungers further out onto the deck.

In the library and music room, a black lacquered Yamaha piano echoes the antiqued ebony finish of the bookcases and cabinetry custom made by Mountain High Woodworks in Bozeman, Montana. A sparkling chandelier and artwork by Alexandra Nechita, a Romanian born cubist painter and muralist, brilliantly offset the ruggedness of the Oklahoma stone wall.


Locati Architects, Bozeman Montana –, 406.587.7369.

All photos are courtesy of Roger Wade.

(Originally published in the November/December 2012 issue of Cowgirl Magazine).