Designed by Studio 27 Architecture, the House on Fire Island is a summer beach house in the resort community of the Pines on Fire Island, New York. The typology of the homes in the Pines is recognizable to anyone who has visited an East Coast Shoreline resort town. It is a builder-driven typology reflecting the pragmatism of the inhabitants of these coastal communities. Almost always the “good sense” pragmatism that allows these homes to be built affordably overtakes the inherent liveliness and natural spirit of the place and creates structures that are a bit dull.
This project inserts some of the “spirit of the shore” into this “Yankee thriftiness” residential typology. Common detail and material remain, but the volume of the 1,550 square foot house is expressed as a skin, rather than as a box-like container. The skin keeps the heat in. Over time, the skin of woven cedar boards will assume the same patina as neighboring houses. Large windows are introduced to reveal a luxurious light interior.
The organization of the plan creates a direct link between the occupation of the different spaces during the day and the sun’s path. Program adjacencies were carefully studied before identifying the swimming pool as the center of social interaction. Interior rooms and exterior spaces were arranged to track the path of the summer sun, connecting it to the rhythm of daily life: breakfast by the pool; cocktails and socializing on the front terrace; and evening dinners in the west light. Sleeping rooms form the backstage of the house.
Products in this project:
Bathroom Equipment: Kohler, Hansgrohe , Duravit, Vero
- Bathroom plumbing fittings by Kohler
- Bathroom plumbing fittings: Axor by Hansgrohe
- Bathroom plumbing fittings: Watertile by Kohler
- Starck 2 by Duravit
- Lavatory by Vero
Construction materials, Semi-finished materials: Caesarstone
- Countertops: Concrete by Caesarstone
Floor: Globe, Ann Sacks
- Stones 1 by Globe
- Luxor Gray by Ann Sacks
Heating and Ventilation: Gavin Scott
- Fireplace: Vision by Gavin Scott
- Entry doors by Andersen
- Windows by Andersen
Kitchen Equipment: General Electrics, Fisher & Paykel, Cascade Faucets
- Refrigerator: Monogram by General Electrics
- Oven: Monogram by General Electrics
- Dishwasher by Fisher & Paykel
- Range: Monogram by General Electrics
- Tower Tech by Cascade Faucets
Lighting, Heating, Home/building automation: Contrast, Meltemi, Wever Ducre, Delta, Artemide, Wandleuchte, Cirius
- Lighting fixtures by Contrast
- Lighting fixtures by Meltemi
- Lighting fixtures by Wever Ducre
- Lighting fixtures by Delta
- Lighting fixtures by Artemide
- Lighting fixtures by Wandleuchte
- Lighting fixtures by Cirius
Walls: Sherwin Williams
- Paints/Stains: Escape Gray by Sherwin Williams
- Paints/Stains: Pure White by Sherwin Williams
Photos: Judy Davis
Hewlett Street House is a contemporary family residence that has been designed by MPR Design Group, located in Bronte, a beachside suburb of Sydney, in the state of New South Wales, Australia. The underlying design intent was to explore the notion of “prospect and refuge” within a family house and then to apply the idea to a specific site near Bronte Beach.
The “prospect” were the constantly changing beach and coast views to the south of the site. The “refuge” was the other contrasting character where we created introspective spaces that provide a sense of sanctuary and enclosure.
These two driving desires for the house were accommodated through devising two sculpted concrete forms responding to their particular use and orientation. The forms are rounded at the edges similar to tubes which are independent of each other enabling the upper tube to twist towards the view while the lower tube orientates to the street.
The upper tube containing the living spaces is open ended and carved out which allows the northern winter sun to penetrate deeply into the space while allowing an unimpeded outlook to the southern view. The form also provides efficient passive ventilation drawing the prevailing nor’ east breeze through the house.
The house boldly sits as a modern insertion into the typically poor building stock of its surrounding environment. The context is of varying building styles, scales and materials so the house creates a deliberate contrast in form and color. The homogenous appearance of the house allows the forms to be emphasized by sun and shadow with the play of light continually shifting and moving with the path of the sun.
On the two lower levels the character of the spaces changes to places of privacy and refuge. The middle tube houses the bedrooms, each with a different aspect and outlook. The lower level has a cave like atmosphere with the room formed by a cut bedrock wall and a dark stone floor connecting the internal and external spaces. The pool provides a water element spanning between the rock wall and the garden.
Photos: Courtesy of MPR Design Group
Voelklip is a modern beach house designed by SAOTA Architects in collaboration with interior design firm Antoni Associates, located in Voëlklip Beach, Hermanus, a town on the southern coast of the Western Cape province of South Africa. A narrow 14 meters site was engaged to its maximum to achieve a spacious home arranged around a large garden and pool courtyard. Extensive concrete spans capture the panoramic sea views.
Completed in 2009, the brief called for a beach house suitable for a family of four, on a vacant site in Voelklip, Hermanus, Western Cape, RSA. The site is a long thin rectangular subdivision stretching from the sun facing street and mountain side to the undulating tree tops of the milkwoods and fynbos and the coastline on the South.
The gently sloping site presented the opportunity for a split-level living space allowing lounge, dining to be placed above the bedrooms on the ground level, all enjoying dramatic sea views. The double volume family room and kitchen form the heart of the home and form the connection between the sea facing accommodation and the internal sunny terraces, pool and garden. The main garden courtyard functions as a large wind free and sunny outdoor entertainment environment.
Materials were selected to enhance the beach-house character of the building while at the same time adding touches of sophisticated detail: white cement screed floors to the public circulation areas; lime washed oak floors to the lounge, dining area and lower-ground floor bedrooms; off shutter concrete ceilings; and external timber decks and pergolas, cladding, screens and shutters providing security, privacy and protection.
Photos: Courtesy of SAOTA
Plywood House ii is an incredible modern two-story beach house designed by Andrew Burges Architects, located in Bondi Beach, Sydney, Australia. The home was designed into a narrow plot of land orientated away from the neighbors to provide a private sanctuary for the owners. Differing from the surrounding buildings, which are characterized by their typical ‘shotgun’ corridor and internal organization, the playful beach house opens up connections to the sky and garden from both levels. The beach house offers a sense of privacy while still having access to the outside landscape and views beyond.
The concept was to create an exterior envelope that directly expressed the long, thin site geometry, but to use the elements of the interior to shift and break down the typical linear corridor space, using the interior geometry to orientate the house away from neighbors and to orchestrate connections with the sky and the garden from both levels of the interior.
The materials used were affordable and created a coastal feel for the house – ecoply cladding for the body of the house and a concrete capping block to create a textured base for the house. Within the simple block-like building form, the windows were used to animate the exterior. On the lower level the window openings are varied and opportunistic – finding points of sky or natural light to suit the specific uses they contain. On the upper level, a continuous strip of windows and screens capitalize on the opportunities for light, sun, and outlook that the second story allows, framed by privacy screens to account for their added exposure.
Photos: Courtesy of Andrew Burges Architects
This casual beach house design was the vision of renowned architect Paul Jones together with builder Zorzi South, situated in Eagle Bay, on the tip of the Cape Naturaliste in Geographe Bay, Western Australia. Winner of the 2014 Master Builders Association South West Home of the Year and six other awards for construction excellence, this beautiful home stands tall on top of the dune, right on the beach at Eagle Bay. Interior design by Nina Dempster from Ozbyrd Design brings an understated elegance to this home.
From the customized lift to the Coolroom, the home comes complete with every convenience one could ask for whilst still maintaining a relaxed and casual, beach house feel.
The use of natural timbers are predominant, with the recycled tallow-wood floorboards, painted white cedar-lined ceilings and walls and solid cedar cabinets dominating the interiors whilst the complete exterior is clad vertically in pacific teak. These raw timber textures juxtapose to the more industrial element of polished concrete in the feature wall of the staircase and the matching polished plaster of the fireplace.
Double-glazed sliding stacker doors open out onto a huge outdoor alfresco balcony that continues the teak motif.
Photos: Courtesy of Zorzi South
Waterfront House Coogee is a casual family retreat designed by JPR Architects, situated on a double block of ocean front land in Coogee, a beachside suburb of Randwick 8 kilometres south-east of the Sydney central business district, in the state of New South Wales, Australia. Completed in 2010, the 5,920 square foot (550 square meters) residence showcases strong, primitive, architectural influences and bespoke construction.
Photos: Courtesy of JPR Architects
In a complete renovation of a bayside A-frame house on Fire Island, New York, Bromley Caldari Architects turned a seasoned beach rental into a sleek hideout. Rethinking the iconic 1960s A-frame form, the architects broke through the envelope of the building to weave a sculptural staircase through the airy three-story structure. A typical A-frame, the house had a spiral staircase splitting down the middle, four dark and cramped bedrooms, a leaky roof, and a cracked pile foundation – not the pristine vacation home that is so often associated with Fire Island Pines.
The poolside sunsets over the Great South Bay were not to be discounted and the potential was there, yet blocking the fantastic view and occupying the heart of the house was the old six-foot diameter steel spiral staircase. The clients wanted the removal of the staircase and were willing to sacrifice a bedroom or two to make it happen.
With the lot coverage at its limit, Bromley Caldari took advantage of a local law that permits bay windows to project a maximum of two feet out from the building envelope. The new staircase would tuck into two large bay windows staggered at different elevations on each side of the house with a catwalk balcony off of the master bedroom to connect the two sides. Weaving from one side to the other as you ascend the three floors, the staircase offers views of the bay framed at each elevation.
On the main level, a double-height living/dining room stretches the length of the window-clad north facade. The open kitchen and house utilities run along the south side. The master bedroom suite features full-height glass sliding doors that take advantage of the view. Although the doors stay mostly open, when guests are present and privacy is required, the sliding glass doors fog up at the flick of a switch.
Under the peak on the third level is a quiet second bedroom and den (that acts as the third bedroom when needed). The two rooms are connected by a walk-through bathroom – a glass shower enclosure on one side and a glass- enclosed powder room on the other. Pocket doors at each end allow for privacy.
Photos: Courtesy of Bromley Caldari Architects
This incredible modern beach house has been designed by West Chin Architects, located in Long Beach, New York. The home features a 26 foot wide, 3-ton airport glass hanger door in the living room that opens to the Atlantic Ocean. The residence is sited on a 60′ wide x 100′ deep corner lot on the Atlantic Ocean is an addition to the fabric of a community which is a city by the sea; an absolutely beautiful dichotomy of nature and man.
This is the first house in the United States to use the environmentally conscious structurally dynamic BBS wood structural panels from Austria. These panels allow a minimal floor slab thickness and large spans, and in the same breadth provides insulation value. The BBS acts as the interior and / or exterior finishes in many cases; this was a warm balance to the vast amount of glass on the facade and the exposed reinforced thermal concrete wall.
The use of a solar panel on the south facing roof will put energy back on the grid during the week, when the house is not in use. And during the weekends it will supplement the electrical needs of this 5,500 square foot house.
At the top of the interior stair one will find the 26’ wide bi-fold garage door that opens up to an unobstructed view of the ocean, beaches and horizon. Every element of this beach home takes advantage of its natural surroundings.
Photos: West Chin Architects