Backyard Oasis

Cape Cod Home  /  Spring 2020 /

Writer: Julie Craven Wagner / Photographer: Paul Pettengill 

The true object of all human life is play.
– G. K. Chesterton

They say there is a child in all of us. For J.D. and Laura Bessey that is absolutely true. Owners of Bessey Construction, Inc. on Nantucket made sure they had endless sources of fun and adventure when they built their dream home in the area of the island known as Surfside. The inside of their home has plenty of spaces to gather, cook, eat, relax and socialize, but the outside is where everyone tries to squeeze in every last special moment the seasons allow. 

A comfortable and casual seating area just off the kitchen erases any barrier between the inside and outside with an Andersen Big Door that opens the space to the pool area. Ipe decking transitions underfoot from the hardwood interior floors onto a covered porch. One small step down finds Italian silver travertine stone tile (stays cooler underfoot than bluestone) in over-sized squares surrounding the pool deck. A spacious in-ground pool reflects a deep turquoise hue due to absolute black pebbles incorporated into the gunite mixture for the pool.

A child who does not play is not a child, but the man who does not play has lost forever the child who lived in him.
Pablo Neruda • Chilean poet • 1904–1973

At the far end of the pool, a dining pavilion takes center stage with a fully functional outdoor kitchen and seating for memorable dinners with family and friends. Stone planters and propane-fired flaming urns add any additional drama that might be lacking, but given the well-thought out design and details, that doesn’t ever seem to be a possibility. For a more intimate evening gathering, also with flames, the home’s fireplace is two-sided allowing for outdoor enjoyment under the stars. 

Opposite the house, running along the other side of the pool, is the pool cabana, a surprise J.D. quickly whipped up while Laura was on vacation in Florida last winter. The Bessey’s have history and a home in the western mountains of Maine and the cabana reflects the natural pine paneling that is so often found in the homes and public spaces of the region. A spacious outdoor bar with a live-edge, varnished wood bar top draws friends and family together to catch the big games on the large television above. Comfortable leather seating makes this space an obvious choice on cool fall evenings when each day is counted and special. Extra quarters for guests also make the pool cabana a favorite spot for anyone lucky enough to be invited to Nantucket for a sleepover.

One of the last improvements the home has received involves a modest basketball shooting court tucked around the side of the house. Constructed by J.D. with his very capable crew and not withstanding Laura’s input to have the court’s surface prepared in attractive shades of blue that blend seamlessly with the pool and the surrounding stone decking. This family loves to play, loves to entertain and loves to settle in for a little rest and relaxation, even if it is just the two of them. 

Make sure to check back with us throughout the year for more of this gorgeous home. Click here for our previous coverage of the home!

For more information, visit besseyconstruction.com

Julie Craven Wagner

Julie Craven Wagner began her experience with Cape Cod Life in 2010 when she joined the sales team after 10 years of working with local businesses on the Cape and Islands with WMVY. In addition to sales, she is the Associate Publisher/Editor of Cape Cod LIFE, Cape Cod HOME, and Cape Cod ART. Growing up on the Outer Cape has given her a unique perspective of life on Cape Cod, from tip to bridge, and that is reflected in her appreciation and presentation of stories found within the pages of our publications. Julie lives in North Falmouth with her husband, Eric, and their yellow lab, Enzo. When she finds free time, she enjoys her Cape Cod life sailing on Buzzards Bay, spending time on the beach in Wellfleet, or exploring Martha’s Vineyard.