Our clients’ site was a nearly private island on Little Sarasota Bay. The lush, subtropical flora and intimate connection to the surrounding waters animated their vision of an island dream home. Avid anglers and ecological enthusiasts, the clients asked for a serene retreat that connected them to the site’s natural beauty, while simultaneously providing privacy and spaces for entertaining.
We fulfilled that dual intention with this 7,752-square-foot residence. Our design solution was informed by the centuries-old vernacular of Balinese architecture, with additional elements drawn from the British West Indies. In our design for the main house, the interior volume flows into terraced outdoor living spaces, Zen-inspired gardens, a swimming pool with a swim-up bar, a fire pit, koi ponds, and enchanting water features punctuating the house’s exterior walls. The cumulative effect of these elements is a blend of fantasy and reality. Our design intentionally evokes the sense of an airy, light-filled, tropical Shangri-La. Simultaneously, it functions as a sacred space, providing residents and guests alike with a powerful experience of the real world, in all its natural splendor.
Animating our clients vision of an island dream home.
The house’s terraced floor plan adds to the intimate ecological connection. An array of water features surround the main living space. Each is only a few inches below the interior floor elevation, creating the illusion of the bay itself being close enough to touch. Bridges and stepping-stones provide access to the outdoor living space. Pool deck and pathways are all designed to appear to float.
The house’s interior comprises two living floors above a ground-level garage and storage areas. The main living level incorporates a private mother-in-law’s suite at the west end, and two guest suites facing south. The owner’s suite comprises the entire upper level. Here, the combined experience of civilized comfort in the interior and the natural beauty outside attains its supreme expression.
The experiential imperative of our design doesn’t come at the expense of practical considerations. Exterior materials are all low maintenance; a smooth, sanded stucco finish and mahogany wood accents predominate. The primary structure combines poured concrete and concrete block. The roof is constructed from lightweight, concrete tile. All exterior openings are insulated impact-rated units.
Secluded, secure and pristinely scenic, this exquisite island retreat inspires relaxation and renewal. The house’s technology is state of the art. Its beauty is timeless.
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