This small house with a large presence draws from sources far and near: ancient Greek Doric temples, Palladio’s ‘Redentore’ and Villa Barbaro, Peter Harrison’s Redwood Library, Jefferson’s Monticello, Asher Benjamin’s carpenter pattern books, and local Greek Revival building traditions of Concord.
Anchored to the land on a craggy stone foundation, Rocksyde sits perpendicular to the seacoast, addressing the waves below like a ship’s prow. A black and white floating staircase inside is inspired by the horizontal stripes seen in the layers of rock found in a canyon. Southern sunlight filters through the stairway to all three levels of the house.
The first floor functions as a living room in the summer with French doors that open to the view. At the end of the season, the furniture is moved aside to make room for the pick-up truck. Lanterns suspended from the points of the roof are standard mooring balls fitted with light bulbs inside.
This former U-shaped stable block surrounding a water-facing courtyard had been converted to a house many years ago. Over a period of fifteen years we designed three phases of further renovations, reorganizing the internal plan while retaining the antique charm of the original.