This 5,800 square foot home was built in 2014 in Watermill New York for a family who lives in New York City. As a weekend home, it’s designed for casual Hamptons living with family and friends. The design developed through a creative alliance between Architect Cass Calder Smith, Principal of CCS Architecture, and Designer Sharon Bonnemazou, Principal of MODE Designs, who is also the homeowner with her husband Florent. Sharon’s creativity and vision united with Cass’s skill and experience lead to in the completed design. The collaboration included in-depth meetings where drawings, models, and reference images were exchanged, reviewed, and selected, which led to final drawings and specifications. During construction, the team effort continued through weekly site meetings where the design was fine-tuned.
Sharon’s goal was to have a serene and private weekend getaway that would be discreetly luxurious. She wanted the home to have an architecturally masculine structure that would serve as a foundation for layers of raw and organic elements such as clay, aged wood, dark steel, distressed leather and textured stone. Worked into the bespoke design are many personal details and elements influenced by Sharon and Florents’ French and Asian cultural background and travels.
The exterior of the house has a rustic simplicity like barns, which are common to agricultural Long Island with simple geometric forms grounded in the landscape, natural wood siding, and metal roofs. The siting and shape of the house accomplishes privacy from the neighbors, partial views of Mecox Bay, and distinct outdoor spaces.
The house is T-shaped, with three wings that result in two L-shaped outside areas. The first outdoor area is on the entry side, which defines the front yard, driveway, and entry porch. The second outdoor space is the main yard with the large lawn and a beloved apple tree that was saved and can be seen from all rooms. This terraces down to the pool and pool house, which extends the main yard, but also becomes a place of its own. The pool house creates a bookend to the yard and is designed to be an out-building with the same barn shape and materials as the house, yet with dark-stained siding to counterpoint the house and to be an appealing ‘object in the landscape’.
The first floor of the house includes the main living areas and a guest suite – each with sweeping connections to the outside and plentiful natural light to render the interior. The second floor has bedrooms and a home studio with views of the yard and beyond. The pool house is versatile with a workout area, a sleeping nook, and a full bathroom.
“I’ve always been drawn to the understated elegance of simple but well-made objects that show the artist’s hand, and this house exemplifies that aesthetic through the use of artful and meticulously applied high-end materials and carefully edited furnishings that are quietly chic”, says Sharon. “The end result is a uniquely beautiful home whose timelessness will withstand trends that may come and go”.