Reoriented on the hill - Nahant, Massachusetts
When I first met the clients and during meetings thereafter, the thematic phrases they emphasized for their dream home were “views” and “interesting light.” I kept these concepts at the forefront of the conceptual process and used them to anchor the design for their residence.
The existing 928 square-foot residence was located on top of a hill overlooking Nahant Bay, with a distant view of the Boston skyline farther beyond. After the reconstruction, we had extended the existing available area with an addition of 1,788 sq. ft. of interior space and 600 sq. ft. of cascading decks.
With such an appealing view available from the hill and understanding the clients’ inclination toward creating more opportunities to access it, I knew the redesign should capitalize on this vantage point. As such, the new addition dramatically reoriented the direction of the house toward Nahant Bay and included a viewing turret as a focal feature.
The viewing turret is accessible from each of the two bedrooms and provides a quiet place to enjoy the view of the harbor from the upper level. It also provides a covering for an informal outdoor area at the lower level deck. A granite slab, installed between the four posts supporting the turret, provides a structured use of the first deck, as an outdoor table where the owners can enjoy meals outdoor. The arched windows and the articulation of the ceilings provide effects of light and shadows and the requested interesting lighting effects to the interiors.
Two years after the residence was built, the owners re-engaged GDA to study potential expansion and landscape opportunities for their property, with the addition of a new structure. The rendering above represents our proposal with cascading landscaped terraces developed in collaboration with Brown Sardina, Inc.