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Harding Shores Overlook

Seaside

Our client’s request for a house that appeared small and modest from the street but that still accommodated summertime living for a family of five and frequent guests was a challenge in providing lots of space in a tight envelope. The natural slope of the property helped to achieve this goal. The design is one-and-a-half stories at the front but three stories at the back, where large expanses of windows and porches on each level take advantage of the stunning views. The horizontally disposed front is in scale with the neighborhood of capes and small lots and with few trees. The verticality, and larger size, of the back is in scale with the seascape beyond. The over-sized, three-story-tall bay window projects toward the view and provides five walls of windows to take full advantage of the wraparound view. It frames oceans views as if they were seascapes on the walls. The complex roof with several interesting gables accommodates the different scales at the front and back and the restrictive height limit that governed part of the design.

The compact plan, surrounded to the southeast, south, and southwest by a welcoming porch, is entered at the center, with the kitchen and other service spaces toward the house’s front. The dining room and living area with its fireplace reach out to the water views. At the center of the house is a winding staircase, which leads to the second floor. Here, a gracious hall with its own sitting area leads to a guest bedroom and a master bedroom suite. The bedroom’s angled bay windows echo the shape of the living area below.