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FOREST RESIDENCE | contemporary lakefront living

  • PROJECT: 4,100 SF Single-Family residence, new construction in Framingham, MA
  • DESIGN TEAM: Kristen Giannattasio + Tali Buchler
  • GENERAL CONTRACTOR: G.F. Rhode Construction
  • LIGHTING DESIGN: Light Insight
  • STRUCTURAL ENGINEER: Henry J. Bishop and Son
  • CIVIL ENGINEER: Schofield Brothers
  • MECHANICAL ENGINEER: Sun Engineering
  • ELECTRICAL AND PLUMBING ENGINEER: Johnson Engineering + Design, Inc
  • PHOTOGRAPHER: Carly Gillis Photography

Every detail was meticulously considered in the creation of this custom design, and we often say this modern lakefront home fits like a glove – to its site, to the adjacent trees, and to the homeowners’ lifestyle. The homeowners were already living in this location along a steep lake embankment in a suburban development, when they decided to tear down their existing house and build their forever-home. Their vision encompassed a modern sanctuary harmonizing with nature, capitalizing on the scenic lake vistas, while ensuring the preservation of every tree on the lot.

architectural drawingCONNECTING TO THE SITE
A Z-shaped plan not only safeguards all the trees on the premises, but it also positions the interior living spaces to capture curated views and create zones specific to the owners’ lifestyle.  Volumetrically, the Z-shape is composed of two three story wings partially embedded into the hillside, with the foyer, stairs, and bridge located in the central connecting volume.  Upon entering the home, the view of the lake is immediately revealed through a towering three-story window wall behind an open stair. 

Views to the landscape were strategically framed, providing limited windows towards the neighborhood and expansive floor to ceiling windows towards the lake.  Selectively editing particular views results in a perception of being alone in the landscape among the trees and the lake, even though this Framingham home is sited within a suburban sub-division.

Throughout this modern lakeside house, the materials and color palette serve to accentuate the inherent link to the natural surroundings.  The warmth of wood is expressed on the exterior with the western red cedar siding. Inside, an array of materials including mahogany, copper, lava stone, walnut, soapstone, carbonized bamboo, and stainless steel combine to form a naturally textured and warm palette that mirrors the surrounding landscape. These materials are thoughtfully incorporated throughout the dwelling, employing modern design approaches to cultivate a unified, tranquil atmosphere befitting the homeowners’ tranquil retreat.

The layout of the first floor plan encompasses of two wings separated by an entry foyer and staircase.  Within one wing are the communal areas, including the kitchen, dining room, living room, and porch. The kitchen anchors the public wing with custom bamboo wall and cabinets with a specialized pot rack to store and display the homeowner’s collection. The other wing contains the more secluded spaces, such as the office/library, bathroom, and garage.  On the second floor, the design centers around a primary bedroom suite on one side, featuring a roof deck, while a guest suite occupies the other side. The walk-out basement level incorporates a family room for movie-nights, a mechanical room, storage areas, and a wood shop that supports the homeowner’s furniture-making endeavors.

The primary bathroom situated on the street-facing side of the home has wrap around high windows to usher in natural daylight and frame views of the lush tree canopy and expansive sky.  The design offers the homeowners an additional perspective of the site, while maintaining their privacy.  Adjacent to the primary bedroom, the roof deck offers a tranquil vantage point to witness the sunrise over the lake.  

Do  not hesitate to contact me to start your design project journey!