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Lewes Beach House

Our clients asked for a new modern beach house with an open plan and airy feel, to be built in a new coastal community with very restrictive design covenants. Rather than settle for the expected builder version of a 19th century beach house, we chose to base the design on rural vernacular types of the sort found just inland from this site. A simple barn-like gabled form contains the main living spaces on the upper floor in a light-filled volume overlooking the dunes and the sea. Three shed forms lean against this volume and contain secondary and support spaces. The space created in the "L" of gable and sheds creates an enclosed entry courtyard with a pool, while a screened porch at ground level connects the courtyard to the beach directly in front of the house.

Inside, the necessary steel framing to protect against hurricane winds has been fully exposed within the great room to give scale and detail to this generous space, and to celebrate its making. Full of daylight from multiple directions, this space is also naturally ventilated through operable clerestory and cupola windows, eliminating the need for air conditioning on all but the hottest days.