This 3300 SF weekend getaway home provides a private refuge for a NYC couple. This new house was designed on a previously developed site. The owner, who is also an interior designer, provided the furniture. The semi-private five-acre property faces a country road to the north. The south end of the site is heavily wooded, with a small pond near the rear of the site that provides a beautiful focal point for the property.
The client requested three bedrooms, three full baths and two half-baths, living, dining, and media rooms, and a study. The house nestles into a rise in the landscape allowing for a two-story bedroom zone to seamlessly link with the main living area, which has a 12′-6″ ceiling. This volume creates an urbane loft-like space that opens onto the rural setting at the rear of the house.
The house’s pavilion-like form has a simple, rectangular perimeter that is modulated by its relationship to its site. The gestural roofline slopes upward from the closed front facade to the more open rear facade, and provides a sense of soaring relief as the occupant moves from the entry court to the expansive views beyond.
The entry court is defined by the entry facade the separate parking garage that form two sides of the gravel parking area. To accommodate concerns about privacy and energy conservation, this north-facing facade is mostly solid, and is punctuated by four cedar boxes that define the interior functions of firewood storage, a coat closet, a powder room and the kitchen. The lowest part of the house’s overhang provides protective cover at the entry, which is marked by a glass door facing an art wall with a translucent screen that defines the back of the living room hearth, allowing the glow of the fire to be visible as the house is approached in winter months.
The house opens up considerably as one moves to the view-facing south facade. Large expanses of glass, configured of standard manufacturer’s wood windows, define the living, dining, and kitchen areas, providing a direct connection to the beautiful site while the large over-hang coupled with automatic interior shade protects the interiors from the summer’s sun.
The grassy slope to the pond remains wooded enough to augment the benefits of the over-hang when most needed. A dining terrace and a private master bedroom suite garden are defined as exterior rooms by concrete half-walls that are extensions of the main house form, further unifying the house with its setting.
Interior materials include reclaimed teak cabinetry and recycled translucent countertops, polished concrete floors with energy-efficient radiant floor heating, and environmentally benign low-VOC finishes throughout.
Exterior materials are stucco, cedar siding and painted trim.
The steel structural columns are exposed to define the main living areas and have been provided with a waxed finish to integrate them into the refined interiors even as they reinforce the sense of an urban loft-like interior set into the bucolic landscape of Duchess County, New York.
Architect: SPG Architects
Surface area: 3300 sfqm
Project year: 2008