Contemporary Coastal House by Bates Masi Architects



Contemporary Coastal House by Bates Masi Architects

 The Enigmatic ‘Genius Loci House’ in Montauk, New York

Contemporary Coastal House by Bates Masi Architects

This fascinating home is in the small coastal resort of Montauk, New York.  Bates Masi Architects said of their project that the unique history, climatic conditions and folklore of the location contributed considerably to their design decisions.

The ‘Genius Loci House’ is somehow imbued with the essence of this atmospheric location.  Enigmatically named, a ‘genius loci’ is:

“…an intelligent spirit or magical power that resides in a place”.  Wikipedia

So is it possible for this contemporary coastal house to truly embody the spirit of Montauk?  To do this it would need to show architectural characteristics relating to tradition, to the topography of the region and to its mysteries and its legends.

Contemporary Coastal House by Bates Masi Architects

To start with the origins of this home are rooted over generations.  It was originally a horse ranch, so this new construction has already planted roots in this enigmatic area. Recognizing the climatic challenges the modern construction is solidly built to withstand extremes of weather including dense fog and frequent gales.  Maybe the solid construction is also intended to keep more visits from creatures like the legendary ‘Montauk Monster’ at bay. The construction of this contemporary coastal house was an ambitious and challenging project.  The house is subtly terraced and rooted into the steep hillside but without compromising access to natural daylight.

From the south, the house seems to be two separate single storey ranch houses. The emphasis on the horizontal plane merges it with the sky and the ocean.  However, the north elevation reveals the extensive size of the building. This contemporary coastal house is full of surprises and the interior is truly magical with an informal welcoming ambience.  There is distinct fusion occurring here between traditional, even historic elements and the more contemporary open building style.  This is a home to spread out in and be free, but it also has a cozy secure aspect which encourages sharing, maybe sitting with family and friends and sharing strange tales associated with Montauk.  These two separate characteristics are epitomized in the contrasting materials of open transparent glass and warm protective wood, which are used alternately throughout this home.

Contemporary Coastal House by Bates Masi Architects

Traditional aspects of Montauk building style can be seen in the low-pitched gabled roof which in this case has been modified to suit the contemporary structure of this contemporary coastal house.  Adding to the unique ‘spirit’ of this home are numerous unexpected details.  For example the covered bridge that links the two shingle clad volumes, allows a changing light into the courtyard below. During the day it seems flat and two dimensional, but by night the light escapes revealing fascinating patterns through shapes cut into the boards.  These patterns also relate to the blue stone screen which is positioned in front of the of the clerestory windowsAs the architects say this:

\… stone appears weightless as alternating stones are removed from the pattern to let light into the guest area. These unexpected details reinforce the larger idea of capturing the unexpected.’

Which in essence is just one example of how this contemporary coastal house has been designed to become a physical manifestation of the atmospheric and surprising Montauk area.

by Jaz

Contemporary Coastal House by Bates Masi Architects

Contemporary Coastal House by Bates Masi Architects

Contemporary Coastal House by Bates Masi Architects

Contemporary Coastal House by Bates Masi Architects

Interior design – The Enigmatic ‘Genius Loci House’ in Montauk, New York

The Enigmatic ‘Genius Loci House’ in Montauk, New York

The Enigmatic ‘Genius Loci House’ in Montauk, New York

The Enigmatic ‘Genius Loci House’ in Montauk, New York

The Enigmatic ‘Genius Loci House’ in Montauk, New York

The Enigmatic ‘Genius Loci House’ in Montauk, New York

The Enigmatic ‘Genius Loci House’ in Montauk, New York

The Enigmatic ‘Genius Loci House’ in Montauk, New York

The Enigmatic ‘Genius Loci House’ in Montauk, New York

The Enigmatic ‘Genius Loci House’ in Montauk, New York

The Enigmatic ‘Genius Loci House’ in Montauk, New York

House plans

House plans

House plans

 


Published by Minimalist in
Architecture Interior Design