© Desai Chia Architecture PC

Michigan Lake House // Desai Chia Architecture PC

Leelanau County, MI, United States

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Text description provided by the architects.

Design Architect: Desai Chia Architecture, New York, NY
Architect of Record: Environment Architects, Traverse City, MI
Perched on a woodland bluff overlooking Lake Michigan, this home is an assemblage of three offset structures that play off each other— the ‘gathering’ structure contains the living room, kitchen and a covered ‘vista’ seating terrace; the two ‘sleeping’ structures house the master bedroom suite and three children’s bedrooms.

© Desai Chia Architecture PC

© Desai Chia Architecture PC

© Desai Chia Architecture PC

© Desai Chia Architecture PC

A dining area breezeway connects all three forms.
The roofscape has gentle undulations that follow the movement of the natural terrain and make a playful reference to the vernacular architecture of nearby fishing villages. The resulting rhythm of exposed wood beams provides layers of asymmetrical vaults throughout the interiors. At the southern end of the house, a 20 foot cantilevered roof extends over the ‘vista’ terrace, providing a protected, unobstructed view of Lake Michigan and the surrounding woodlands.
The exterior of the house is clad in ‘shou sugi ban’ cypress that utilizes a traditional Japanese method of charring wood so it becomes rot & bug resistant.

© Desai Chia Architecture PC

© Desai Chia Architecture PC

© Desai Chia Architecture PC

© Desai Chia Architecture PC

The charred texture and the modulation of deep facade members enhances the shadows across the facade as the sun rises and sets.
We reclaimed dying ash trees from the site and milled them down to be used as interior cabinetry, flooring, ceiling panels, trim work, and custom furniture throughout the house.

© Desai Chia Architecture PC

© Desai Chia Architecture PC

© Desai Chia Architecture PC

© Desai Chia Architecture PC

The interiors of the house embody the indigenous landscape that once thrived with old growth ash.
The home elegantly integrates geothermal heating and cooling into its design. Landscape design strategies were closely tied to the design of the house. A tight palette of native vegetation highlights views while also managing storm water run-off.

© Desai Chia Architecture PC

© Desai Chia Architecture PC

© Desai Chia Architecture PC

© Desai Chia Architecture PC

Locally sourced stone creates outdoor seating areas, pathways, and steps.AWARDSAmerican Architecture PrizeInterior Design Best of Year Design AwardWood Design & Building AwardCONSULTANTSSTRUCTURAL Apex Engineering & ManagementMECHANICAL Bayshore EngineeringLIGHTING Christine Sciulli Light + DesignLANDSCAPE ARCHITECT Surface Design Inc.ENVELOPE CONSULTANT James R. Gainfort AIAAV Waara TechnologiesCONTRACTOR Easling ConstructionLANDSCAPER Darling BotanicalsPHOTOGRAPHY Paul Warchol Credits:- Christine Sciulli Light + Design – Lighting Designer – Christine Scuilli- Woodbine Custom Furniture & Cabinetry – Furniture Maker – Gary Cheadle- Apex Engineering + Management – Structural Engineer – Steve Steimel- Bayshore Engineering – Mechanical Engineer – Larry Monigold- Surface Design Inc.

– Landscape Architect – Tim Kirby- Jozwiak Engineering – Civil Engineer – Scott Jozwiak- Easling Construction – General Contractor – Marty Easling- Darling Botanicals – Landscaper – Megan Kellogg.

Michigan Lake House Gallery

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