Feature Story


Turrets, stonework, and graceful lines emphasize the European influence upon Mike Knight’s design for his house in the Woodlands.

Knight’s Castle

Mountain home blends European style with family warmth

STORY Susan Craig
PHOTOGRAPHY Dan Pearson

Continued from the Su Casa's home page...

Tucked into a forest of pines, the design makes the most of long views over the forest and toward the mountains while preserving a sense of the ultimate hideaway. Knight, the building partner of Lee Michael Homes, designed it in collaboration with his wife Alexa, construction manager Gene McCutcheon, and California designer Myka. “There’s not one individual who makes a house,” says Knight. “It’s everybody.”

The double-door entry leads to a feast for the eyes. Elliptical arches present themselves in graceful curves, leading to formal foyer, rooms, and hallways in each direction. “I want people to have a feeling of warmth when they come in,” Knight says. Pride of place goes to the music room, just inside the entrance. Originally intended for dining, the acquisition of a splendid grand piano played by—and signed by—legendary pianist Joseph Hoffman of Alexa Knight’s family changed the plan. A lush oriental carpet and a brilliant backdrop of Japanese prints unify the space.

The step-down living room looks outward to the pines through a large bay window and inward to what Knight calls “the mystery corner.” Constructed of multi-toned castle stone, two walls join at the corner in a plant-filled space that is to become a cascading fountain. “This is the heart of the house,” says Knight. “You need something massive and strong in the heart of your house.”


In the master bathroom, the sink nestles between turrets. Tumbled marble tile and countertops of three-quarter-inch travertine reinforce the European accent.

If you wish to read the printed Su Casa magazine, you can buy it at a newsstand near you or click here to subscribe. Su Casa magazine is published quarterly by Hacienda Press, a division of the Home Builder Association of Central New Mexico, 5931 Office Blvd. NE, Albuquerque, NM 87109. Phone: (505) 344-1783 or toll-free 866-256-4925; Fax: (505) 345-3795. Direct your editorial inquiries, other questions, and comments to Charles Poling, editor and associate publisher.