Lakeside living by Charles R Stinson Architects

Natural stone and wood home by Charles R Stinson
exterior of house, lawn and stone stairs leading architecture, cottage, estate, farmhouse, grass, home, house, landscape, property, real estate, white, brown
exterior of house, lawn and stone stairs leading down to water.

Every home begins with a story. For the owners of this home, it was a desire to be better connected with the picturesque landscape that prompted a change.

The couple, both avid art collectors, already owned a house on a wooded lakeside lot, but the property was not well connected with the surroundings. After purchasing additional land on the same lake, they discussed their dream home with an art dealer, who suggested they meet with architect Charles R Stinson. And the rest, as they say, is history.

Charles R Stinson Architects is a firm that's renowned for modern, light-filled homes that have strong links to the natural environment. For this project it was the beautiful lake and woodlands that helped to inspire the design, and the position of the home.

"Once we found the best location, the early meetings focused on the design," says Stinson. "The couple wanted an understated, yet unique, welcoming home that would provide a mix of large and more intimate living spaces."

Stinson took his cue from nature, balancing extensive glazing with solid stone elements that visually help to anchor the home to the landscape.


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timber roofs, white couches, red rug in centre of floor below coffee table, stone pillars

"The home feels very grounded by the natural stone forms and the human scale of the spaces within, yet the large windows and soaring overhangs evoke a feeling of floating above the lake," says the architect.

A flat roof with distinct horizontal lines helps to counter the strong vertical presence of the trees and stone columns.

"The flat roofs were also inspired by the owners' art collection," says Stinson. "The composition of horizontal and vertical planes was analogous to the evolving direction of the couple's taste in art."

Many of the discussions revolved around the choice of materials. Stinson says each material, from the copper roof edge to the cedar wood ceilings and anigre walls, and the stone fin walls, has its own energy, and had to be balanced within the context of the entire home.

CRS Interiors was brought in for the interior design, due to the firm's deep understanding of Stinson's architecture and ability to preserve the balance of materials, down to the most minute detail.

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luxury leather furniture in open room, high windows, timber ceiling and floors

"The result is a tightly integrated composition of art, built-ins and accessories that are reminiscent of a finely crafted sailboat," says the architect. "This reinforces the sense that the house is floating above the lake below."

Now comfortably settled, the couple say their new home is a family retreat and sanctuary a place to reconnect with each other as well as the natural environment.

Stinson says the final result is also a credit to the construction team, Streeter & Associates, and the landscape architect, Coen + Partners. The architect has since been commissioned to design the family's Colorado ski condo.

For details, contact Charles R Stinson Architects, phone (952) 473 9503. Website: www.crsarch.com.

Jul 20, 2012
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