AOME: A Premier Custom Residential Architecture Firm in Seattle, Washington

AOME started in 1986 by 4 cofounders, now directed by Mark Elster (Retired partners Anderson, Olason, and Marsh round out the remainder of the AOME acronym). Mark Eslter studied Architecture and graduated from the University of Washington. Elster and the other founders discovered their shared passion and excitement for the personal nature of residential design and they had huge dreams and inspiration from both contemporary and historical contexts that led to the creation of AOME which has had over 38 years of success. Although the firm has since won many awards for our custom home designs, the true source of our passion for the work and our creative spark remains our many satisfied clients. 

AOME’s Collaborative Approach to Home Design

  • Find the ideal property using a field tested feasibility process
  • Define the requirements and scope of work 
  • Establish a realistic budget for the work
  • Assemble design team consultants (Engineers, Interior Designers, Landscape Architects, etc)
  • Assist with the selection of the General Contractor for the work
  • Realize the vision for their home through our design process

Every Home is Unique so Our Approach to Your Home is Unique

AOME Architects truly believes every client and every project site is unique in its own way — our design response must also be unique. AOME responds with personalized service and individual designs tailored to each client. From concept to completion the work combines creativity, imagination, and attention to detail.

The principals and skilled employees of AOME approach design in a manner that respects both contemporary and historical contexts, while acknowledging the many modern developments that enhance comfort, livability and enjoyment. Good design is easy — it takes something more to go to the next level. AOME successfully strives for the best in design by applying an abiding sense of proportion, massing, scale, light and volume, along with rigorous attention to detail and process. AOME’s next-level ability to foster a cohesive collaborative team from among the best and brightest in the construction industry stands apart. Our deep respect for each team member’s expertise and valuable insights helps elevate the combined result of our efforts to a higher level.

Our Recognition in Architecture

As you view our portfolio you will encounter testimonial statements from happy clients and satisfied contractors who’ve worked with AOME. Theirs is the ultimate praise that affirms the success and fulfillment of the AOME approach and our commitment to excellence. 

Rewards: We have a 5/5 rating on Houzz. We have won best of Houzz in design from 2020-2023! We are also 2022 RED Award winners with Luxe Magazine. AOME also took first place in 2020 in the London based International Property Awards program for the Estate Transformation & Terrace Renewal projects. 

We Design Homes Throughout Seattle, WA and the World

While our team is mostly based out of the Seattle, WA area, we have served the following locations: Bainbridge Island, Ballard, Beaux Arts Village, Bellevue, Beacon Hill, Bothell, Burien, Capital Hill, Clyde Hill, Hunts Point, Inglewood-Finn Hill, Issaquah, Kenmore, Kirkland, Medina, Mercer Island, Newcastle, Redmond, Seattle, Shoreline, Woodinville, Yarrow Point, Lake Washington waterfront, Santa Barbara, Aspen, Montana, Kauai Hawaii, Whistler BC, Bend OR

Our Services

3D Rendering, Building Design, Energy-Efficient Homes, Historic Building Conservation, Home Additions, Home Remodeling, New Home Construction, Custom Homes, Construction Drawings, Feasibility Studies

About AOME Architects

Our Mission

At AOME Architects, client satisfaction reigns supreme. Since 1986, we’ve honed our expertise in residential projects, offering tailored designs ranging from $3.5–$25 million or more. Our dedicated team collaborates closely with clients, ensuring their dreams materialize in every detail with impeccable service.

Design Philosophy

We believe in crafting timeless spaces that anticipate future needs. Our commitment to innovation and sustainability shapes each design, blending creativity and attention to detail.

Responsibility & Innovation

Our designs not only transcend time but also prioritize responsibility. We continuously research and collaborate to offer cutting-edge solutions that meet unique challenges and aspirations.

Projects We Excel In

AOME Architects excels in:

Pre-Design Project Assessments 

Before any design work begins, we thoroughly evaluate projects, beginning with our Requisites & Opportunity Brief process — your first investment in the success of your project. During this important step we delve deeply into your requirements and how they relate to the unique site characteristics of your property and the ultimate feasibility and do your project. This is how we give you confidence to move forward, knowing that your vision aligns with reality on the ground. To schedule a consultation, click here.

Our Design Process

Building upon the Requisites & Opportunity Brief findings, we probe further into your requirements, lifestyle, and vision to quickly propose design solutions for evaluation. Our 3D virtual model allows you and our team to visualize and refine the design collaboratively throughout the process. We guide you through the entire design journey, assembling the best project team and navigating regulatory aspects for a seamless journey to your dream home.

Finalizing Plans & Specifications

This crucial next step shapes your aspirations into tangible designs. With meticulous attention to detail and a collaborative approach, we refine designs to blend functionality and luxury seamlessly. Here again, the 3D virtual model enables the project team and yourself to envision the final result.

Construction Process

Contractors who have worked with AOME, often share favorable candid contrasts drawn between our approach to the construction phase and that of other architects they work with. This is because of our unusually high–level engagement during the building process. We assist you and your contractor with procurement decisions, evaluating and selecting the most skilled craftsmen, and interpreting the design intent to ensure every detail meets our exacting standards.


A more detailed analysis and breakdown

AOME Architects: Elevating Luxury Living in Seattle, WA

Our Mission

At AOME Architects, our mission is simple: client satisfaction is paramount. We are committed to providing a personalized approach to design, working closely with our clients to bring their dreams to life. Whether it is an addition to your current home or a design from the ground up, we have the expertise to handle residential projects of all types starting from $3.5 Million. 

Since 1986, our team of dedicated architects are driven by a shared passion for creating beautiful, functional spaces that exceed our clients’ expectations. We partner with our clients to explore and create architecture unique to their needs and dreams. We understand that each project is unique, and we take the time to listen and understand our clients’ vision, goals, and aspirations.

With our years of experience and expertise, we have become a trusted name in the industry. Our portfolio showcases a wide range of projects. We pride ourselves on providing ageless design solutions while staying at the forefront of design trends and technology. 

At AOME Architects, we believe that every project is an opportunity to create something truly extraordinary tailored to each client and their personalized needs. Our dedication to client satisfaction, combined with our personalized approach and design expertise, sets us apart as a leading architecture firm in Seattle, WA. 

Our Design Philosophy

At AOME Architects, our design philosophy is rooted in the belief that architecture is not just about creating beautiful spaces, but also about anticipating and addressing future challenges. We understand that the world is constantly evolving and believe a well-tailored home is key to nurturing your family and helping to sculpt your future. From concept to completion our work combines creativity, imagination, and attention to detail. 

With a focus on design excellence, we are committed to delivering projects that not only meet our clients’ expectations but surpass them. Our team approaches each project as an opportunity to push the boundaries of innovative design and create spaces that inspire and enhance the lives of those who experience them.

Responsibility is at the core of our practice. We take our responsibility to our clients, the community, and the environment seriously. From our founding, nearly 40 years ago, before it was trendy, AOME has always carefully considered the impact of our designs to the community and the environment. 

Research and development play a crucial role in our work. We are dedicated to advancing design knowledge through continuous exploration and collaboration to bring concepts to life. By staying at the forefront of the latest trends, materials, and technology, we provide our clients cutting-edge solutions that address their unique challenges and aspirations.

At AOME Architects, we are proud to be a leading force in the industry, creating designs that not only stand the test of time but also shape the future. We invite you to join us on this journey of innovation and excellence in design.

Types of Projects

AOME has become the go-to firm for the select few discerning clients seeking unparalleled luxury and sophistication in their living spaces. Each project undertaken is meticulously tailored to the unique tastes and preferences of our esteemed clients, resulting in extraordinary homes that are a harmonious blend of elegance, innovation, and functionality. Whether it’s a waterfront estate on the picturesque shores of Lake Washington, a contemporary or traditional masterpiece nestled amidst the urban fabric of the city, or a sublimely beautiful residence with sweeping views of the majestic Puget Sound, AOME consistently delivers awe-inspiring designs that exceed the expectations of even the most discriminating clients. With our unwavering commitment to exceptional craftsmanship, attention to detail, and a deep respect for the rich architecture inherent to the surroundings of each client’s property. It is no wonder that AOME’s projects are revered as true expressions of magnificence and sophistication. AOME designs Custom Homes, takes on Home Renovations and Home Restoration, and Energy-Efficient Green Homes.

The Design Process

We pride ourselves on our meticulous and thoughtfully curated design process. Before any design work commences, every project goes through our proven process for evaluating your vision, needs, requirements and aspirations in context with your chosen property — a process we call Requisites & Opportunities Brief. This pre-design consultation takes places with a firm Principal via a 30-60 minute zoom meeting {insert calendar link} Following, this early investment in the success of your project may involve several in person meetings and at least one trip to the property. This process allows AOME to learn about your lifestyle, your preferred usage of certain spaces and establish how to cater the space best for your family. 

Building upon the Requisites & Opportunities Brief, and other optional predesign services, AOME commences the primary design process using state of the art software in a 3D virtual environment {Link up to video on home page}. This initial design is refined and worked on throughout the full process, allowing the client to visualize our plans as they come to life. 

As your architect we help you to navigate your way through your build project and mitigate the risks of construction. We guide you through different options to find what is best for your desired results. As we establish a blueprint of your overall vision, AOME will assist you with assembling the best design team including your general contractor, engineers, landscapers, interior designers and any other specialist that your design may require. During our design process, AOME will lead your design team to help ensure your pricing and established goals are met. Simultaneously we will evaluate regulatory impacts to your project, apply for permits, and navigate the jurisdiction review process. In the long run, working with AOME will ensure an experience of a lifetime as we bring your dream home into reality with the highest quality result. 

Our design team at AOME places great emphasis on understanding the unique qualities of the site, whether it be a stunning lakefront property or a sprawling urban lot. Collaborating closely with our clients, AOME Architects brings our expertise and creative vision to the forefront, translating ideas into innovative designs. With an unwavering focus on detail and craftsmanship, AOME Architects creates spaces that are not only aesthetically pleasing but also functional and timeless in alignment with our clients’ vision. With our commitment to excellence and a client-centered approach, AOME Architects strives to exceed expectations and deliver exceptional architectural designs that elevate the living experience.

Project Assessment

Project Assessment at AOME: Evaluating Feasibility and Requirements

AOME, the premier residential design firm based in Seattle, WA takes a meticulous approach to project assessment as we embark on creating exceptional spaces for high-end clientele. Before our design work can begin, we embark on a thorough evaluation process that ensures the feasibility of your proposed project. 

Feasibility studies serve as the foundation for your projects’ design parameters. The team meticulously studies the site’s unique characteristics, including topography, natural light, and surrounding views—along with the physical, economic, and legal aspects of a site to determine if it meets client expectations. Through comprehensive analysis, we identify the challenges and opportunities that will be the basis for transforming your vision to reality. Further, by understanding the context, the firm ensures that the proposed design harmonizes with the landscape and maximizes its potential.

Finalizing the Plans & Specifications

Finalizing the Plans and Specifications: Making your dream home come to life. 

AOME, is a Seattle-based architecture firm renowned for our cutting-edge designs and tailor-made solutions. We take immense pride in our meticulous approach to finalizing the plans and specifications for our high-end residential projects. This critical step is where the vision of our discerning clientele takes shape, ensuring that every design detail aligns with their aspirations and surpasses their expectations.

Like all other aspects of our process, your project architect principal will be engaged in leading your team. Finalizing the plans and specifications is the cornerstone of translating those design aspirations into reality. AOME’s unwavering commitment to excellence, and the close collaboration we foster between our project team and our clients, sets the stage for superior execution. Our predictable process results in stunning residences that seamlessly blend functionality, aesthetic appeal, and high–value luxurious living. 

Using our sophisticated 3D virtual model, we work closely with our clients, consultants, and their contractors in a collaborative process to refine the design and myriad details for construction. Incorporating our client’s unique preferences — while accounting for the technical requirements of natural materials and manufactured components, and pragmatic constructability issues — are challenges our office relishes solving every day. Our team of experienced architects possesses an exceptional eye for detail, ensuring that even the most intricate design elements are meticulously crafted. As this work progresses, we make sure the result adheres to local guidelines and regulations to make lengthy permit review processes more efficient. 

In the realm of high–end residential architecture, AOME’s refined approach and unwavering attention to detail elevates our projects to another level. AOME ensures that our clients’ dreams become tangible realities, making them a sought-after firm for those who expect nothing less than the exceptional.

{Add notes about BIMX virtual video walk through}

Construction Process

In speaking with contractors who have worked with AOME, you may hear candid contrasts drawn between our approach to the work and other architects they work with — frequently acknowledging and celebrating the service and attention they receive from AOME during the construction phase. 

As with the other steps in our process, your project architect principal will be engaged in leading your design team during construction — at a high level of service too rarely seen. This level of engagement and accessibility increases the integrity and accountability of your architectural consulting team. Your principal architect’s years of experience being intimately involved in all aspects of designing countless successful projects, and administering their construction, will help elevate the performance of the entire team, including that of your contractors.

Surprisingly, the construction process begins during early design with your pre–selected contractor. They will be employed to provide pre–construction services, including cost estimating, schedule projections, constructability assessments, value engineering, and other peer review tasks for you and your design team. AOME is the only architect in the area that contractually requires our clients to take this superior approach that too many architects neglect, to their clients’ peril.

Before work on the ground can begin, AOME’s team will assist you and your contractor with the critical phase of procuring materials and evaluating and selecting the most skilled craftsmen to execute the vision. AOME’s extensive network of trusted suppliers and artisans supplements your contractor’s own resources, ensuring that workmanship will match the high quality materials chosen for your project.

During the construction phase, AOME’s team of architects and project managers carefully review the progress at regular site meetings and through online communications with your contractors, while also serving as their accessible resource for interpreting the design intent correctly. The contractors we work with regularly remark on the unusual level of service and accessibility provided and how it makes the build process smoother.

As the project nears completion, AOME will review the work with you and your contractor in great detail to rigorously confirm conformance to design intent and standards with quality checks to ensure that every detail meets our exacting standards. This meticulous attention guarantees that the result reflects the utmost in luxury, sophistication, and craftsmanship.

AOME’s expertise in the construction process is unrivaled among our peers. From inception to completion, our predictable processes and accompanying commitment to excellence and painstaking attention to detail ensures the seamless transformation of our stunning architectural designs into breathtaking realities.