Project Location: Coastal, Maine
Positioned on a sloping site in Cape Elizabeth overlooking the Atlantic, this house is all about the breathtaking views, and so was our design — both taking advantage of the views and not obstructing them for neighboring homes. Our client sought a floor plan with a separate-but-connected space for her teenaged kids, and the neighborhood context required a house that would fit in in terms of height and scale. Our solution was a design that allows four half-levels to fit within the site’s building height restrictions. As you enter through the garage, the main living area is a half-level up and the kids’ bedroom suites are a half-level down. From the front door, the master suite is a half-level up, and the office a half-level up from there. The result is a collection of spaces that are separate but still in close proximity to one another — a small house that lives big and fits into its surroundings. The house is set back from the street with a one-story eave on the front, and a two-story eave on the ocean side. Porches and rooflines provide scale and balance, and a discreet driveway is placed a half-level below the landscape.
Identifying and maximizing ocean views and optimizing sunlight throughout the day and from season to season were critical considerations. Every room was designed with at least one major vista and we specified wider and taller windows and doors to bring more solar gain into the living spaces. An open-plan relationship on the main level connects to ocean-side outdoor spaces through French doors. On the exterior, materials are durable and low-maintenance: local fieldstone; red-cedar roofing; copper flashing, gutters, and downspouts; white-cedar shingle siding; ipê decking and handrails; stainless-steel cables; and custom-designed board-and-batten siding, ideal for weathering the ocean elements.
Project Completion Date: 2009