This project for a six-acre site in Greenwich, Connecticut, includes a new house and auxiliary buildings, as well as landscape design. The site, a roughly triangular lot bounded by country roads on all sides, is more rural than suburban in character - a mostly open, bucolic landscape with clusters of mature trees, a meandering stream, grassy marshland, and varied topography that rises to a high point almost in the center of the site.
The rise in the center of the site is used as a principal organizing element for the overall program, with the main house sited at the top and the guest and pool houses nestled discretely into the sloping landscape below. Each program element is designed around a specific natural setting. Landscaping takes advantage of site topography and uses native plants and grasses to create a year-round park.
The main house is organized around a large, open living space flanked by two wings containing auxiliary functions. These three elements form an entry court on the north side of the house, while oversized sliding glass panels open up the living space to an expansive south-facing terrace. The upper volume containing private quarters floats above the living space and provides shade to the terrace below.
The expansive south-facing terrace overlooks the landscape from the highest point on the site. It is designed as an extension of the living space, with the operable glass wall seamlessly connecting indoors and outdoors.
The two lower wings flanking the main body of the house form a gracious entrance court that is screened off from the public road by a tree-lined winding driveway.
The upper volume floats above the living space, providing shade to the terrace below; it accommodates sleeping quarters and private outdoor spaces. The garage and service court are set into the built-up slope to minimize their visibility.
The garage and service court are set into the slope to minimize their visibility. The basement level, accessible through the garage and by service stairs in the two flanking wings, contains a gym, a wine cave, laundry, storage, and mechanical spaces.
The corner entry leads to the main public spaces. The grand living room is defined by two large-scale sculptural objects – a sky-lit staircase and a stone-clad fireplace that screens off the dining area. Oversize sliding glass panels open onto an expansive south-facing terrace. This symbolic and functional heart of the house is flanked by two wings. The west wing accommodates a library and an office with its own private terrace sheltered in a pine grove. The east wing is taken up by the kitchen and related functions, with a walled-in court off the service entry designed as an “apartment” for the client’s large dogs.
The bedroom floor can be reached by the main stair or the elevator. It opens up onto a large roof terrace overlooking the distant landscape to the north of the house. A smaller, south-facing private terrace off the master bedroom suite is carved into this floating upper volume.
The site topography and vegetation are used to screen off the project elements from one another and to minimize their visual impact on the landscape. The guest house is partially submerged into the hillside to the north of the main house, and is covered by a planted “green” roof that blends into the landscape.
Sited to the north of the main house, the guest house is nestled into a slope between rock outcroppings and is covered by a green roof that makes it virtually disappear into the landscape. This compact structure, with a terrace overlooking grassy marshland, is designed to offer an experience that is very different from the main house.
The guest house is reached by a stone footpath off a separate driveway. It accommodates two bedrooms and a glassed-in living room that opens to a terrace overlooking grassy marshland. This compact structure is designed to offer an experience that is very different than that of the main house, from which it is virtually invisible.
Located to the south of the main house, the pool area is sited at the bottom of the slope to minimize its visual impact and to create another distinct environment. The pool and the surrounding terrace are anchored by an airy post-and-beam pavilion wrapped in sliding slatted wood screens.