It is not very often that an architect has the opportunity to design a project without constraint. Richard Turlington Architects was afforded this unique opportunity to apply its holistic design approach to a 3,300 sf single family residence in the hills outside of Poughkeepsie New York.
A young family had purchased 25 acres of unused farm-land that included a long access road flanked by classic New England style fieldstone walls. The entry drive terminated in a west facing apple orchard teeming with deer and turkey. The distant view of the nearby mountain range is breathtaking, making our holistic design approach grounded in the dialogue between frame and canvas. How the mountains and vast sky is brought into the house created the design dialogue between in and out.
The final position for the house in the apple orchard was the culmination of many visits throughout a year. This exposed us to knowing the quality of the sun light, the changing landscape through each season, the site grading to minimize the building impact to the ground as well the paths of wildlife traveling through the property.
Richard Turlington Architects created an “L” shaped floor plan that separated two shed roof pavilions, one oriented to the west and one to the north, with the juncture being the main living space. The “L” scheme captures a formal front courtyard while screening visitors from the incredible views until they enter the house, allowing the interior spaces to become the foreground to the distant landscape. It was important that the house belong to the ground, to the site, and that this extension of the ground be expressed with a heavy stone base that supported a post and beam frame of heavy timber wood. The beauty of the natural materials was amplified by a modern style with tightly controlled fenestration, flush detailing and countersunk beam/column connections.
The front door of the house is symbolic in that it is a solid wood panel but set in a transparent vestibule. Crossing the threshold denoted the separation of public to private and that you were entering a sanctuary of stark beauty. There is a main axial hallway that enjoys a double sided fireplace separating the kitchen from living. The ceiling of this hall was low and painted a deep red, forcing the perspective through the length of the house to infinity beyond framed by a modern, dark red aluminum curtainwall system. The main living room is bounded by walls of glass on the eastern and southern faces facing the mountains and providing open flow to the outside bluestone terrace overlooking a pond. The master bedroom enjoys an all glass outside corner allowing for an unimpeded view of the property and the path of sunlight throughout the course of the day. The interior material palette combines stone flooring with clear maple wood, a fieldstone fireplace and boldly colored infill walls between a clear finished heavy timber wood post and beam assembly.
Connecticut based firm, Richard Turlingotn Architects successfully collaborated withthe home owners in creading the residential and interiro design applying our belie of wellness by appreciating a positive “sense of place” amidst a private setting among an old apple orchard.