8,500 square feet (interior)
10,500 square feet (perceived)
Brian Vanden Brink
The house sits on a knoll surrounded by some of Cape Cod’s most beautiful land and waterscapes. The entrance to Stage Harbor, the Stage Harbor Lighthouse, and long distance views to Nantucket Sound are visible to the Southwest. The Mitchell River is directly adjacent to the property and to the West, and it arcs around to the North. The Chatham Lighthouse, the Southway Harbor, and the open ocean are all visible to the east.
A late 18th to early 19th Century Cape had been moved to the property in the 1940’s and partially surrounded by contemporary additions. Polhemus Savery DaSilva Architects Builders removed all but the historic portion of the house and restored it as a wing attached to a new house.
Our clients sought a house based on American Georgian architecture, but accommodating to the picturesque setting and a contemporary family lifestyle. A hip-roofed central portion with four large chimneys (the "New Georgian") is flanked by two wings that enclose an entry court. One wing is partially made up of the historic house (the "Old Cape") which was re-oriented so that its front door faces the approach from the road. A second, new, front door is located at the center of the new Georgian facade that faces the courtyard. The courtyard is entered under a bridge that connects a new guest room to the Old Cape.
The west-facing harbor side of the house does not enclose space like the welcoming courtyard of the opposite side; it confronts the broad and open land and seascape as a bold and complex object. The broad and exposed expanse of the house is articulated by porches and bays added to the underlying Georgian box form. The central bay pushes forward toward the harbor to capture the panorama and to bring light from multiple directions into the spaces inside. The detailing of this bay was inspired by the sterns of the antique sailing ships that "staged" in the adjacent "Stage Harbor" before their cross-Atlantic travels.