One of the surprises we uncovered on this property was an old limestone kiln dating back to the 1800s. We discovered the kiln while clearing out some thickets of brush along the frontage road, and decided to incorporate it into the outdoor space design as part of the experience approaching the house.
The existing property was a twenty acre parcel of flat farmland, made up almost entirely of open meadow – with the exception of a line of trees forming a hedge row running along the side property line.
Our clients (a young couple with three young boys), wished to take advantage of the property so that it provided something for everyone in the family, including a pool and cabana, large spaces for entertaining, a car barn, horse barn and a place for the kids to run.
The project architect worked together with the clients and created a house design that would give the impression of a tasteful old country home which had a number of additions built onto it over the years. Our job as designers was to incorporate the elements our clients had on their wish list, while keeping within the simple style of the architecture.
We located an ideal spot for the new house that took advantage of the views of the distant hills at the rear of the property. This spot was a good distance from the road, and allowed us the opportunity to add a bit of visual appeal to an otherwise uneventful entry experience.
We designed the driveway to enter the property from the lower end of the frontage road, where after a number of sweeps and turns, ultimately winds it’s way to the font of the house. Individual massings of large shade trees were incorporated along the entry to add vertical interest, and help break up the long expanses of meadow between the road and the house. Quick glimpses of the lime kiln can be seen through the trees along the drive during the day, and specialty lighting quietly illuminates the kiln after dark.
A barn structure directly across from the garage bays creates a common area for cars and parking, and it’s connected to the entry courtyard by means of the driveway. An arched porte cochere between the garage and the house opens to the rear yard and the entrance to the pool and cabana area.
A small walkway connects the pool area to a lower bluestone patio defined by three raised stone planters, each containing a large honeylocust which provides shade along the southern facade at the rear of the house. Directly along the house, we incorporated a small reflecting pool with two small fountains which can be seen and heard from the adjoining seated area under the cedar pergola just off the kitchen.