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Grandeur Restored

With the second renovation of a Shingle-style house on the water in Sagamore, a couple finally find their dream home.

With the second renovation of a Shingle-style house on the water in Sagamore, a couple finally find their dream home.

Photo by Eric Roth

When a young couple was looking for a summer home 16 years ago, they stumbled upon the find of a lifetime. A ramshackle Shingle-style gambrel commanding views of Cape Cod Bay had just gone on the market, and the pair, who grew up in New England, knew it was a true gem. They fell in love with the antique summerhouse—so much so that they decided to purchase the property as their primary residence, giving their growing family access to sea and sand in all seasons.

Known as the Pillars, the house, which was built in the 1920s, offered all the romance of living by the sea, but needed some major repairs just to become livable. The first renovation called for some extensive work such as having the foundation jacked up, replacing rotted beams, and updating the kitchen.

After living in the house for 11 years, the homeowners decided it was time for another change. The house layout did not take advantage of the location’s spectacular views, nor did it work for easy entertaining or a modern lifestyle that included three growing children. The couple called master builders Michael Lahart and Leon Pinsonneault of Pinsonneault Construction to discuss how to showcase their house.

What started as a possible kitchen and dining room renovation turned into a complete rehabilitation. Lahart started dismantling the house for the renovation and found rot and termite damage. The contractor knew at this point the scope of the project was going to be much bigger than just a kitchen renovation, so he suggested the couple contact architect Dave Johnson of Skaala, LLC.

Johnson met with the couple to create a master plan for the entire house and design the new interior spaces. “When I walked in the front door, the house had already been taken down to the studs—it was November 2007 and the couple wanted the project completed by June 28th the following year,” notes Johnson. “We had our work cut out for us. But the husband and wife have incredible taste and a great eye for design. So although there was a considerable time constraint, we had clients who came to the table with clear ideas of how they wanted the house to look and function.”

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