2016 BRICC Awards • Doreve Nicholaeff
Three-time award winner
Pleasant Bay • Excellence in New Construction
Utilizing a background canvas of four waterfront acres on the tip of a peninsula surrounded by Pleasant Bay, Doreve Nicholaeff, AIA, founder of Nicholaeff Architecture + Design, applied her masterful artistry to create a stunning family compound that will become a home for generations. An extended family wanted a space that could capture the sunlight and views offered by such a special site, a challenge that was successfully resolved, since the project garnered a 2016 BRICC award.
The front façade makes a timeless statement, with a covered entry flanked by columns and tall gables guarding a central tower, its six-foot stacked windows offering glimpses of the signature staircase within. Inside, the spaces radiate from the circular kitchen, located within the core of the tower, and offering generous views overlooking the terrace and outdoor kitchen. The kitchen borrows additional views and light from the living and dining room wings, which extend toward the dunescape, each culminating in a pentagonal extension, one a piano alcove and the other a south-facing all-season room.
The second story of the wings radiates from a central library and deck, with a master suite comfortably situated in one and guest rooms in the other, each with their own balconies. Conforming to height restrictions commonly encountered on the Cape and Islands, Nicholaeff adroitly took advantage of ceiling space that reached into the roof for the various bedrooms, a practice with precedence in the Cape Cod vernacular.
Just as this home overlooks waterways that swirl and circulate around coves, islands and bays, the house emulates such motion, with passageways leading in and around living spaces, and various “coves” for exploring and pausing. Acting as the chief facilitator of that motion is the architectural centerpiece of the home, a sweeping split staircase, with twin eight-step curves that unite to become a single staircase, rising through a tower. This theme is repeated just steps up from the second floor studio office, where stairs lead to the roof dormer, which then gallantly opens to a second split-curved staircase ending at the emotional center of the house, the widow’s walk. The expanded widow’s walk, partially contained by the entry gables at the front and framed by dormered wings on the opposing side, offers breathtaking 360-degree views.
The ground-level outdoor spaces provide the perfect backdrop for seasonal living and enjoyment with the large deck, outdoor pool, and idyllically landscaped grounds. Nicholaeff has taken a beautiful spot crafted by nature and accented it with her thoughtful, innovative design to create a place that is difficult to leave behind.
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