On a dramatic bluff overlooking Long Island Sound, an 8,000 square foot modern residence welcomes family and friends to enjoy good views, good food, and good company. Conceived as a family “resort” for every day and all-season living, the design mixes an open flow of flexible spaces for cooking, working, dining, and gathering with private retreats for sleeping, reading, dressing and relaxing. The social spaces are grand and the private spaces are intimate, all contained within a large yet cozy structure that spills to the outdoors.
The house is like an open shell nestled on a carved hill. A wrapping metal roof and wall surrounds and protects a permeable glass and wood skin that invites arrival and frames the open landscape and water views. The house energetically reaches beyond its shell to connect indoor and outdoor experiences. For example, brick, stone and cedar wall surfaces run freely between inside and outside. A cantilevered upper balcony from the master bedroom thrusts through the shell towards the water.
The sculpted lower landscape connects to a poolside grotto. An outdoor kitchen has a skylight porch roof. The site is comfortably breezy on warm days, but during harsh seasonal storms is buffered by a protective skin enclosure and landscape selections.
The house has 3 levels of various heights containing 6 bedrooms, 6.5 bathrooms, a living/dining area, eat-in kitchen, 3 den/ lounge areas, wine cellar, an exercise/ game room, and a garage. Moreover, ample “back of house” spaces support and supply the staging of various family gatherings and social events. The 20’ wide x 36’ long x 12’ high center living area morphs into a dining area for 24 or event space for 50. The open kitchen is a social center for sharing food and good cheer.
The generously open and flexible spaces are densely composed to promote a feeling of welcoming comfort and energy whether a few or many people are inside. A center hall steel frame stair is a walkable viewing platform by day and chandelier at night. Furnishings and art include a mix of vintage and contemporary, custom and catalog, heirloom and homespun, which together tell stories of family lore, personal connections, and distant travels.
A house becomes a home when it contains and connects, delineating boundaries through a play of scale while connecting flowing interior spaces with open-ended corners. In this residence, indoor and outdoor areas feel at once contained and cozy, connected and expansive. Weaving geometric ribbons of humble materials and a central hearth actively stitch family and friends to the natural setting and to each other, activating spaces for entertaining and respite, community and privacy.