WHEN TALENTED PROFESSIONALS TALK, WE LISTEN.
Admit it, you have an inquiring mind, and you want to know about the team designing your Park City dream home. We understand so we decided to bring you conversations with the talented people designing, building, and outfitting your homes.
Jean-Yves Lacroix, Founder
Jean-Yves Lacroix is the founder and senior designer of Lacroix Design. He brings a unique blend of experience to his clients, conveying the new and the old worlds, proposing both a creative as well as hands-on approach to residential design. He values quality, aesthetics, and eco-sensitivity.
What services do you offer?
At Lacroix Design, we are all about high-end residential design. We make spaces, not just pretty ones, but ones that fit with our clients’ lives like a glove.
What is your architectural and educational background?
I am French and I was educated and trained in Switzerland. After obtaining a professional degree of Carpenter and Cabinetmaker from the Ecole des Arts et Metiers, in Geneva, Switzerland, I graduated in 1986 with a diploma in Architecture from l’Ecole d’Ingenieurs, also in Geneva. I started my career in France, working for my family’s two businesses designing handcrafted European chalets and also in industrial design manufacturing skis. Per Utah’s architects licensing act, I am working as a Design Professional.
Describe your process—how do you work with clients, contractors, and interior designers?
In high-end design it’s the little details that make the most important difference. I start my design process with the land—it has much to say. After studying the site, I approach it as an artist and designer. I work hands-on with tracing paper, pencils, and computers. A magnificent house is the result of a seamless collaboration, and we bring together a team that is laser-focused on design. Although it feels like a small army at times, there’s no fighting!
Designing, it’s like magic. My clients, they inspire me. I try to get into their minds, in a good way,and put their personalities into the design.
What other specialties do you have in-house?
My daughter, Ines, is a recent graduate of the University of Utah’s Architecture School and has begun working here. She’s a talented photographer and brings an understanding of the newest technology that helps our work, particularly with virtual reality. It’s a joy to work with my youngest child, and I constantly learn new things from her that improve our designs and overall practice.
What makes the difference between a good house and a great house?
How you place the house on the land is what matters most. A great house knows where it belongs.
How do people describe your work?
People say my designs have “clean lines” and “no wasted space.” I think I balance a less-is-more philosophy with also wanting to be impactful.
What do you enjoy most about designing buildings/houses?
My clients inspire me. I try to get into their minds – in a good way – in order to wholly put their personalities into the design. I try to capture their love for the land and create a design that embraces the magic they feel. It’s a bit like matchmaking, but with houses and landscapes.
How did you get your start here?
I followed my family’s path in construction and because of my Father’s ski manufacturing business – the Lacroix Ski Company. I swapped Alps views for Utah’s mountains, moved to America in 1989 at the encouragement of colleagues who told me about Park City, and after learning from others, I started my own firm.
If you weren’t a Design Professional, what would you be doing?
Most likely I’d be making furniture. It has less paperwork than construction but the same number of splinters.
What music do you listen to when you work?
I work in silence. It’s the best background for my creativity and is always in fashion.
What do you enjoy most about living and working where you do?
The mountains are profoundly beautiful, and the people here are pretty special too.
Last book you read that you would highly recommend?
The Poetics of Space by Gaston Bachelard. For architects it reads like a love note to spaces. Bachelard understands that architecture is more than just a building and explores what it means to create places that reflect what we internally hold to be valuable. I agree and aspire for my designs to serve a deeper emotive purpose. But practically speaking, there’s a balance with functionality. A house also needs to keep you dry from the rain.