This home sits on a promontory overlooking the eastern shore of Hundred Acre Cove, an upper estuary of the Narragansett Bay. It is surrounded by a mature coastal forest that shelters a quiet oasis overlooking the cove and is a place frequented by a pair of nesting bald eagles. Great care was taken throughout design and construction to preserve the natural beauty of the site and celebrate the unique qualities of the place.
The house is designed for a couple that found a spot close to the waters of the Narragansett Bay where they could age in place. Having just recently sent their last of three kids off to college, and now living with, and taking care of, an aging parent, the owners wanted a design for a house that could serve the needs of their growing extended family and allow them to enjoy visits from children and grandchildren for many years to come.
The geometry and orientation of the plan responds to the constraints and opportunities offered by the site. Regulatory setback requirements from coastal features defined an extremely limited buildable area on the site. In response, the configuration of the building footprint minimizes the environmental impact on the surrounding landscape, and the orientation of the house takes full advantage of the extraordinary views and sightlines towards the cove and marshlands that surround the property. The design of the exterior balances the needs and character of two very different sides, one facing the street and the other facing the water.
On the water side – The house is surrounded by a mature coastal forest that shelters a quiet oasis overlooking the cove. Design elements such as full height glazing and corner windows, terraces and patios, maximize connection to the surrounding environment.
On the street side – the design participates in a dialog with its surrounding neighborhood context with a composition of wood lap siding and gabled roof geometry. A layered sequence of exterior spaces and garden walkways provide privacy from the street to the main entrance.
The plan of the house is organized around a central, functional core comprised of a main stairway and a corridor that links the front and rear entrances with the garage, laundry, mudroom and kitchen pantry. This compact and efficient core is surrounded by the kitchen, dining and family room designed to be a visually and spatially connected series of living spaces. The lower level bedroom suite, corridors and entrances are designed to be fully accessible.