This featured property (some details have been concealed to maintain the privacy of the owners) posed an interesting problem. Or an interesting opportunity, might be a better way to put it. Located on a small, picturesque peninsula that almost curls back in on itself, creating a sort of small, natural bay, even identifying the best place to position the house was a challenge. What was the best spot to maximize the natural views? Where would the family put their docks? How should the home fit in and make the most of the natural setting?
In the end, we positioned the house to maximize its views of the water, including the bay, but with a focus on the lake at large. We also included landscaped paths down to two docks, one primarily for swimming and enjoying the lake views, and one for accessing the watercraft
The rest of the lot is nearly covered by trees, both evergreens and deciduous, so the building design had to fit into the natural setting. On the outside, that meant lots of wood siding and stone accents. Well, not wood, exactly, but long-lasting, almost zero-maintenance plank siding that looks exactly like wood but won’t wear down against the elements the way wood will. For siding color, we chose a brown tone that was harmonic with the natural surroundings, but still had an elegant look befitting a house of this size and location.
The same reliance on natural materials continues inside the house. The flooring is hand-scraped hardwood, stained a rich brown color that allows the natural variation in the wood to show through. The ceiling and most of the casing and trim in the house is knotty pine, also stained, but not quite as dark as the flooring. Most of the ceilings on the main floor are vaulted, including those for the master bedroom, kitchen, dining room, great room, and separate wet bar, creating a feeling of wide-open space even among so much gorgeous stained wood. The open floor plan is ideal for entertaining and can easily accommodate the large gatherings the homeowners love to host.
Visible structural timbers are also part of the design. These large beams serve two purposes. They support the structure of the roof, and they are in and of themselves a striking architectural feature. These large timbers, stained to match the floor, create the feeling of a woodsy lodge, one that wouldn’t be out of place in a Swiss chalet. But the space between these trusses maintains the open feel of the vaulted ceilings, at once airy and grounded.
The master bedroom is a retreat within a retreat, with incredible lake views from anywhere in the room and a spa-like master bathroom that is an oasis of wood and stone. Separate shower and tub with windows that offer privacy but also let in all the natural light a person could want. Dual vanities and a ton of cabinets mean there’s always plenty of space, when you need a vacation from your vacation, which is also your life. Sounds pretty great, right?
And if the main house isn’t enough, well, this property also boasts a… we’ll call it a man cave, but it’s more of a man-sion, if you will. This outbuilding has five garage stalls, a bar/entertainment area, plus living space. It’s plenty of room to store your watercraft in the winter and still have space for a workshop, pool table, yourself and your friends, or anything else you want to put in there.
The entire property is a perfect example of what happens when thoughtful design meets a stunning piece of land: the home is everything the owners want, and more, but fits seamlessly into the natural landscape, working with the environment to highlight its beauty, while offering an abundance of comfort.