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Home to over half a million people, Fresno is known for cultural diversity, vibrant agriculture, and an emerging tech start-up industry. The city’s economic potential and its mix of cultures attracts families to this part of the sunny San Joaquin Valley. And, compared to the rest of California, it is one of the most affordable places to live and build a home.
Custom home builders based in the city and nearby towns have helped many homeowners transform their idea of a dream home into life. Through their collaborations with established designers and architects in the field, they build unforgettable projects that grace the city’s neighborhoods.
Here, you’ll find the best residential architects and designers in Fresno. The companies included in the list are architectural firms that have partnered with the city’s most notable builders to shape and reshape its residential architectural landscapes. Some of these professionals designed a home that earned recognition from the industry’s biggest award-giving bodies. Our editorial team also considered the firms’ affiliations, the number of projects they have in the city, the value of their work, the background of their principals, and most importantly, the reviews and accolades that they have gathered through their years of service.
This list includes both licensed architects and residential designers who can both design stunning homes but differ in other services offered. Architects are trained in design, engineering, and project management and have passed a licensing exam. Residential designers typically don’t manage projects and plans will need to be approved by a structural engineer. Whether you choose to hire an architect or a residential designer will depend on your project needs and complexity.
2133 Amador St., Fresno, CA 93721
When the architect’s vision of aesthetics and creativity meets with the client’s ideals of function and cost, the result is timeless. Antoyan Architecture strives to embody this ideal in every project, regardless of size or level of complexity.
The company is affiliated with the biggest organizations in architecture and design: the American Institute of Architects (AIA) San Joaquin Chapter and the American Society of Interior Designers (ASID). The firm’s extensive background allows it to take on highly valuable projects in a variety of sectors, including residential, commercial, medical, and religious.
The firm was founded in 1984. Under the leadership of Robby Antoyan, a member of the National Council of Architectural Registration Boards, it produced stunning living spaces throughout the region. A majority of Antoyan’s designs for residential buildings celebrate traditional and modern elements of Spanish and Mediterranean architecture: symmetrical structure, expansive windows, red-tiled roofs, and white stucco façades.
Arthur Dyson Architects
1295 N Wishon Ave., Fresno, CA 93728
With over four decades in the architecture and environmental design industry, Arthur Dyson is one of the most accomplished architects in the field. Aside from completing over 700 buildings and other facilities, he has introduced award-winning structures featured in multiple publications. His collections of designs and writings, published in monographs and books, have served as inspiration for budding architects and designers in the field.
Since its founding in 1969, the firm’s contribution to residential architecture has been commended by highly-esteemed industry institutions. These include the Society of American Registered Architects (SARA), the American Architecture Prize, and the California Council Society of American Architects.
One of the company’s most notable home designs can be found in Fresno. Completed in 1982, the unforgettable Bedwell Residence’s unconventional proportions and contemporary details secured the company a prestigious Award of Excellence, 25-year Award. This major design accolade was granted by AIA San Joaquin in 2016.
Huber & Huber Architects
10796 N Tea Party Ln., Fresno, CA 93730
Comprehensive architectural services and an extensive design background has earned Huber & Huber Architects success in residential and commercial design. The company provides full-scale project evaluation, planning, programming, and architectural design. Victorian, Rustic, Ranch, Mid-Century Modern, Contemporary, and Mediterranean home designs—many of which were constructed in Fresno—dominate the company’s portfolio.
The company has been repeatedly recognized for sustainable, green designs. Ann Huber, the firm’s principal architect, is a LEED-accredited professional and a member of the AIA. That association continues to help the firm expand its capabilities in modern and traditional methods of planning and designing the region’s stunning living spaces
A look at its client reviews highlights the company’s knowledge in ADA-compliant design and construction and efficiency in processing permits and paperwork. Most importantly, the firm’s ability to deliver what is promised on time and within budget makes it a preferred firm for first-time project owners.
LRB Architecture and Urban Design
5250 N Palm Ave. Suite #222, Fresno, CA 93704
While LRB Architecture and Urban Design is a relatively young firm, its fresh, modern perspectives elevate its reputation as one of the most efficient and innovative architectural firms in the region. Since its founding in 2004, the firm has produced timeless designs that feature the elegant boldness of Mediterannean architecture.
Principal R. Brent Looney started his career in 1993 as an intern architect. Before establishing his own firm, Looney spent his years as a leading designer for some of the region’s biggest architectural firms and honed his impressive skill set in custom residential, academic, medical, and religious design.
The company’s membership with the AIA helps it connect with clients, networks, and resources that further enhance its design approach. Collaborations with leading builders in the field allow the firm to complete residential, commercial, healthcare, and restaurant designs that pass the industry’s highest standards in quality and functionality.
Marvin Armstrong Architect
1640 W Shaw Ave. Suite #102, Fresno, CA 93711
Marvin Armstrong Architect offers clients a more personal, hands-on experience in project design. From meeting project owners for a consultation to supervising the production of required paperwork, principal Marvin Armstrong personally attends to every step of the process.
The firm makes use of the Revit program, a modeling software that creates a comprehensive virtual walkthrough to explore the interior and exterior aspects of a proposed building design. This program enables clients to visualize and plan every detail of a project. The software also helps the company to come up with smart designs that cater to the specific functional and stylistic needs of its clients.
Marvin Armstrong has more than three decades of experience in architectural planning and design. Many of his previous projects include façade improvement, public art, and residential building design. Marvin is also a founding member of the local art organization Clay Hand Studios.
Michael Karby Architecture & Planning
PO Box 1824, Coarsegold, CA 93614
Michael Karby Architecture & Planning’s design philosophy emphasizes the importance of collaboration between designer and project owner. This collaboration encourages clients to be more involved and to provide input that can help integrate the different factors in the process such as site design, scheduling, and budget. The result: a client-oriented architectural program that answers to the unique aesthetic and functional demands of the project owner.
Design, planning, engineering, and construction evaluation are the firm’s top services. Regardless of size, value, or complexity, the company’s = three decades of experience supports its status as a leading firm for commercial and residential projects.
The firm’s residential portfolio showcases mid to high-value Contemporary and Traditional homes. Some of these projects are inspired by a combination of styles. The firm’s profound understanding of these creative interactions come from the professional experiences of its principal, Michael Karby, AIA.
Paul Halajian Architects
389 Clovis Ave. Suite. #100, Clovis, CA 93612
Paul Halajian Architects’s designs celebrate the distinction of the different styles and architectures that define an ideal living space. The company’s main goal is to find the balance between technical superiority and design, a feat that only the most experienced professionals can attempt.
Paul Halajian, the firm’s principal architect, is a member of the AIA and a LEED-accredited professional. Paul has over 25 years of experience he has focused on sustainability, constructability, and client-focused business practices throughout his impressive career.
Under Halajian’s leadership, the company has delivered high-value projects to the single and multifamily markets. One of these projects is The Georgia, which is a 27-unit apartment complex in Fresno. The building received the AIA San Joaquin Design Award of Merit in 2018—the same year it was completed. While the project was designed to “create an expression that respects and elevates the historic character of the neighborhood,” the builder made sure that it stays structurally relevant and answers to the functional demands of modern living.
Rottner & Associates
8754 N Millbrook, Fresno CA 93720
Combining the firm’s experience in architecture and construction management, Rottner & Associates delivers luxury homes that embody the individualities of its owners through timeless design and well-planned architecture. By understanding the dialogue between structure and setting, the firm meets the demands that arise from visualizing and finally realizing the project owners’ ideal of a dream home.
Ed Rottner, the firm’s principal, is known for his signature designs. Rottner’s portfolio highlights the refined elegance of contemporary lifestyles and the design inspirations that represent them. At the same time, his firm incorporates technology and sustainability into every project that it takes on. Many of the firm’s projects are fashioned to support solar-ready structures and energy-efficient facilities.
Established in 1972, the firm is one of the oldest architectural studios in the region. Many of its Classic, Contemporary, and Mediterranean designed residential projects are scattered across the city’s high-value neighborhoods.
7591 N Ingram #101, Fresno, CA 93711
SIM Architects introduces a new kind of architectural experience that combines the best of what innovation and efficient project management can offer. The company is composed of professionals, each of whom covers a wide spectrum of expertise in design, business, and planning. This collection of talents empowers the company to serve a long list of industries, such as retail, healthcare, academic, public, municipal, and residential clients, and it has been building that client list since 1987.
John H. Smith, AIA, and David Iwanaga, AIA, are the principal partners of the company. Both have over 25 years of experience in architectural design and management. The partners advocate for the sustainable design movement and actively engage with those issues on the US Green Building Council.
We were especially impressed with the Christensen Residence in Fresno. The 65,000-square foot home has traditional detailing. The residential space accommodates a wide gallery hall that allows natural light to enter and air to circulate freely. Beautiful windows provide a fitting frame for the stunning scenery offered by the Sierra Nevada Mountains.
516 W Shaw Ave. Suite #101, Fresno, CA 93704
Vigen Incorporated has contributed timeless designs to California’s residential architectural landscape. While the firm maintains a small team—ranging between 15 to 24 professionals—its in-depth knowledge of the latest technology and traditional design methods allow it to cater to a large, varied clientele.
Design and planning projects for commercial, education, industrial, civic, and government clients dominate the company’s portfolio. For its home and living spaces, the company combines its deep understanding of environmental issues, traditions, and innovations in order to create structures that redefine a client’s very concept of “home.”
The firm’s comprehensive approach to design was nourished by its founder, Gary Timan Vigen, who established the firm in 1979. Not just in California, many of Vigen’s accomplishments can be seen in the unforgettable structures across Nevada, Washington, Montana, Oregon, and Idaho. Some of these works were featured in several publications, including the Builder-Architect Magazine, Forms and Surface Magazine, and the Fresno Bee.
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