The old backyard was nothing more than a sloping expanse of lawn. Mark Hicks regraded the property to create a series of terraces that step down to the swimming pool. Hick’s colleague Agnes Kacperczyk selected all the JANUS et Cie outdoor furniture.
The geometric design of the firepit area echoes the geometry of the house. Hicks used the grass and flowering plants to soften the straight lines.
The exterior of the library/nymphaeum recently completed on the grounds of Newport, Rhode Island’s Bellevue House features such Federal-era details as the demilune and bay windows and the ornamented pediment. The lap pool leads toward the library, and there are cabanas on the right.
Sunlight plays through gaps in a pergola under which a wall of sliding glass doors connects the kitchen and living area to the outdoors.
A concrete coffee table from CB2 anchors a seating area facing the outdoor fireplace. Stones that project slightly from the fireplace face are used to hold candles at night.
The home’s standing-seam aluminum roof matches the roof on the nearby barn. “It’s a nod to a simple agricultural metal roof,” says architectural designer Tom Carberry.
The screened porch, which served as the location for the homeowners’ daughter’s wedding dinner last year, can be quickly reconfigured depending on the occasion.
Landscape designer Verne Fisher’s masses of lavender, Snow Hill and May Night salvia, and Elf kalmia frame the view of the Merrimack River from the Gompers’s sloping Newburyport property.
On the porch, wicker rockers are clustered around a blue-and-white urn planted with an Endless Summer hydrangea
Stone steps nestled into plantings lead from the lower terrace to other seating areas
Landscape designer Verne Fisher’s masses of lavender, Snow Hill and May Night salvia, and Elf kalmia frame the view of the Merrimack River from the Gompers’s sloping Newburyport property.
Just footsteps from the house, a fire bowl surrounded by benches provides a warm place to snuggle on cool nights.
She used metallic paint on the cabinetry in the kitchen in the screened porch, along with a black granite countertop and backsplash.
The ground-floor courtyard, located off the family room, features one of the home’s only bursts of color in the form of citron-yellow pillows. The nesting tables by JANUS et Cie can easily be repositioned when the couple entertains.
During colder months, the porch’s screen panels can be changed out for glass. “The client didn’t want a television in the main living area, so we put one here instead,” explains Hay. “With the heaters on, it’s a great place for watching football games.”
The patio is sheathed in Caledonia granite and features an outdoor kitchen, chairs from Barlow Tyrie, and a JM Lifestyles table.
Landscape designer David Troast planted white birch and fountain grasses around the firepit area. “The firepit lines up with the living area, and I wanted that view to feel pastoral,” says Troast.
A second garage at the entrance to the property doubles as a potting shed in front of the couple’s vegetable and herb garden.
A path winds through oak and pine trees to a private beach.
The home’s patio is a favorite spot for entertaining; “A regular night in the summer has us with ten-plus around the dinner table,” says the wife.
Sudbury Design Group created a putting green, replete with water views.
The home boasts two grilling areas, one on the patio and a second at the pool house, where a New England Fieldstone fireplace provides warmth after the sun sets.
For this secluded family paradise on a private Cape Cod island, landscape architect Michael Coutu laid two shades of granite paving around the pool and spa. The granite keeps feet cool during the heat of summer. “It has that barefoot-on-the-island feeling,” says Coutu.
Coutu’s team planted an abundance of hydrangeas and roses in what he refers to as “Cape Cod summer colors.”
Extensive lawns offer ample room for rambunctious kids—and their watchful parents; native plants provide a buffer between the grass and the waterways.
“We spend a ton of time outside,” notes the wife, so it was important to create spaces for guests to gather, like this pergola-covered dining table and brick fireplace with a raised hearth.
Architect Mark Cutone used bluestone to define the outdoor spaces; the sun-shielding umbrella is from Tuuci and the chaises from Kingsley Bate.
A door from the primary bath leads to the outdoor shower and landscape beyond.
In the living room, a daybed beckons would-be nappers to take in ocean air thanks to gigantic barn doors that required extra structural supports. “There are portals to the outdoors everywhere, making it easy to commune with nature,” designer Courtney Taylor says. The house and patio overlook the red-roofed, 1930s-era Coast Guard Station.
The pergola-covered outdoor kitchen has everything needed for gathering family and friends.
An outdoor sitting area makes a perfect spot to while away a summer evening. In the cooler months of spring and fall, a fireplace fends off the chill, making the cozy arrangement a three-season location for quiet conversation.
Copious use of native stone for pathways and hardscaping allows the space to blend seamlessly with the exposed bedrock upon which the building resides.
A contemporary water fountain alongside the front entrance features a scupper set in a Corten steel knee wall that echoes the home’s siding. The concrete pool is laid with gray river stone.
“I was mindful of creating scenes that were soft and billowing, that the light would play off of,” Vincenta says, describing her approach to the site. “You want the eye to go to the greater landscape beyond.”
Between the path and the creek, a mix of salt-tolerant native plants provide interest, while taller grasses, strategically placed, form a privacy screen between the creek and pool.
The steel-and-stone structure of gabion walls seems right at home in the coastal New England environment; mounds of hyssop and twilight aster add color along their curves.
The existing gravel driveway was realigned and resurfaced. Deer-and shade-tolerant native plants, including fern, astilbe, lady’s mantle, and andromeda, line its edges.
A galvanized-steel cable railing and a resin additive that binds the gravel into a permeable, nonskid surface enhances safety, while limelight hydrangeas spill over a new walkway that provides a scenic approach to the tennis court.
The structures and plantings in this Westport landscape mimic the flow of the tidal creek it borders while protecting the lawn from erosion and the creek from runoff. The design, by Sandy Hook landscape architect Tara Vincenta, won a 2020 honor award from the Connecticut Chapter of the American Society of Landscape Architects.
A walkway and stairs of Hispania granite run between the pergola-covered dining area and the swimming pool.
A walkway between the house and the garage leads through the arched gate to the backyard swimming pool.
Landscape architect Neil Brunetti completely reworked the backyard, creating a series of relaxing and entertaining spaces linked by stonework, fencing, and low-maintenance plants in a variety of shapes and textures.
The outdoor shower, custom built from a granite pillar, is an unfussy, practical structure that inhabits a graceful moment at the pool entry.
Working with existing changes in grade, the pool sits higher than the landscape beyond, providing an elevated view of the harbor; local granite coping and ipe decking create the pool’s quiet palette, which is offset by the property’s most colorful gardens, filled with catmint, ferns, viburnum, and lowbush blueberry.
The roof deck features furnishings from Casa Design Group.
Adjacent to the main living areas is an atrium, the scale of which was reduced to maximize interior living space.
A stone floor and Western red-cedar timbers make the screened porch feel as though it’s part of the outdoors.
Raised beds hold edibles and marigolds in the vegetable garden.
Rows of lockers by SchoolLockers.com offer plenty of storage for the family and their guests to stow everything from flip-flops to sunscreen.
Landscaping by Jennifer Anderson Design & Development adds the right touches of green to a backdrop of blues and whites in order to complete the bucolic scene.
A custom teak shower surround allows for a luxurious—and private—outdoor bath.
A Holly Hunt sectional surrounds a firepit from Restoration Hardware.
After a dip in the pool—or lake—swimmers can freshen up at one of the cabana’s blue Whyte & Co. sink basins, which sit atop custom floating vanities.
The porch runs along the front of the house and wraps around one side.
Nancy Monahan enjoys a glass of wine with Boca, her Havanese, in the backyard, where a fire table expands the seasons and ceramic stools allow seating for several guests.
An urn from Terrain was given its own pocket garden in the front courtyard where a dining table waits to entertain company.
To reflect the curved gates to the entry courtyard that doubles as a dining area, homeowner and designer Nancy Monahan installed a bluestone pathway. The weathered brick pillars exemplify her respect for the past.
“This is the one room where we went with the more typical blue-and-white nautical feel, although with a more youthful, contemporary touch,” says Boothby of the three-season screened porch.
This picnic table, which is set upon the foundation of an old outbuilding at the edge of the owner’s apple orchard, seats eight comfortably and offers drop-dead views of the Taconic Mountains. It is decorated with fresh-cut dahlias from the home’s vibrant gardens. The ANICHINI cashmere blanket on the bench keeps picnickers warm during cool evenings.
A raised terrace and infinity pool extend into the backyard, which abuts a saltwater pond with views of the bay beyond. Connecting landscaping and hardscaping with the architecture was an important element of the design for Polhemus Savery DaSilva, the firm responsible for the architecture, landscape architecture, and construction of the house.
The covered porch features a collection of wicker and a Crate & Barrel sofa that Skok reupholsters every five or six years. “Snoozing there in the afternoon is the most luxurious thing,” she says.
A classic gate bids welcome.
The screened porch with its teak trim is meant to invoke yacht designer Nathanael Greene Herreshoff. The homeowner loves the seasonal Lexan storm panels that help keep the room warm in the cooler months (a double-sided fireplace helps, too).
The original home didn’t have a porch, but the reimagined structure includes the perfect spot to sip lemonade from one of the Kennedy rockers.
The ten-acre lakefront property takes full advantage of its prime location. Landscape architect Todd Richardson replaced most existing plantings with native species in an effort he describes as “beautification as naturalization.”
A pedestrian bridge connects the main house to three small cabins, designated for the homeowners’ sons.
Accompanied by informal foot paths, a 360-foot stone wall follows a long arc matching the
A Rohl rainhead in the outdoor shower takes care of sandy beachgoers.
A copper wall on the outdoor shower simulates the reflective quality of a waterfall, while clusters of lush banana plants ratchet up the tropical vibe.
No detail was overlooked, from pillows and umbrellas to conveniently placed baskets to stow damp towels.
Retractable glass panels open to a pool that is thirty feet wide by sixty feet long; “that’s a big pool!” notes Skolnick, and it incorporates a submerged spa and a series of gradual entry platforms for soaking in the water.
Bleached pine boards and bluestone slabs provide a beachy, yet sophisticated backdrop for contemporary lighting and a tropical palette; the chair fabric is a fun nod to a traditional batik pattern.
The centerpiece of the patio is a broad firepit in a design that echoes the water feature.
Landscape architect Dan Gordon used granite, a traditional material, in unexpected ways; here he created a bold, scene-stealing water feature.
The home’s traditional front portico offers a sheltered spot to relax.
Terraces on each level were designed by Zen Associates with low-maintenance, natural-palette furnishings and vegetation that can survive New England winters.
To contrast the sharp angles of the planters and steel edging corralling the groundcover sedum “lawn,” ZEN Associates custom designed an oval stainless-steel spa.
From the comfy four-season sitting room, the evergreens form a vista to frame the skyline.
The terrace, which opens off the living room and overlooks the city, is a summertime haven. “It’s our tiny backyard,” Frazier says.
Simple, informal plants surround a swath of grassy lawn.
Hydrangeas and other native plantings border the dining area. Amanda and John Rich discovered that the space under the floating WWOO benches in the grilling area make a perfect spot for storing firewood.
Homeowner Amanda Rich cloned her summer tomatoes and raised them in her greenhouse over the winter.
The WWOO system posts are high enough to afford privacy without creating a closed-in feeling.
Inge Daniels used Ipe panels with the concrete system from the Dutch company WWOO both for privacy and to create a sense of outdoor rooms on the compact lot.
Raised beds are ready for vegetables and herbs, while the espalier trellises await apple and pear trees.
Frameless glass fencing, treated to keep salt at bay, keeps the focus on the view. A major challenge, says landscape architect Peter White, was subtly changing the design vocabulary to go from Cape Cod classic at the house level to contemporary at the pool level.
The outdoor shower gets a spa-like look with blue granite walls.
The bar is a stylish mix of French limestone and black granite; the doors behind it open to storage.
The lower-level deck takes on a contemporary vibe with its French limestone tile flooring and a low wall of stone supplemented by soft plantings behind the chaises.
An entertaining deck holds an outdoor kitchen with everything needed to throw a party, plus a fire table for gathering even on chilly nights early in the season.
Architect Rolf Kielman incorporated garage doors on two sides of the house to let summer breezes flow freely. Designer Chapman salvaged an old trough of galvanized metal to stand in for a sink at the bar.
The TV sits above the bar, hidden behind a Vermont maple syrup sign interior designer Cathy Chapman commissioned.
Keith Wagner’s landscape plan includes segmented serpentine walls of local Panton stone.
“The pool house was designed to look like it emerges from the woods,” Wagner says.
Where better to enjoy the fire than on one of a pair of red-cushioned swinging benches?
This look at the back of the house shows how the designers used oversize windows and sliding doors to maximize waterfront views and fit the home to the sloping lot.
On the back patio, a Santa Barbara umbrella provides shade for a dining area with seating for up to ten. Landscape architect Anne Penniman also carved out spaces for lounging and sunning as well as an outdoor kitchen.
A bluestone-topped fireplace compliments the patio pavers and cozies up a seating area.
The chair is from Silver’s new line of indoor/outdoor furniture, GONG.
An outdoor entertaining area, complete with an infinity pool and firepit, is filled with family and friends in warmer months. “The covered porch is the most used area in the house,” notes Fletcher, “and we keep the pool open until November.” The private balcony is off the master suite.
An existing outbuilding on the property—a perfect spot to enjoy a glass of wine—was reimagined into what the homeowners call the Summer House; the designers had the walls faux grained by a talented house painter.
Two sets of French doors in the Summer House let warm breezes pass through from the Connecticut River to the garden.
Apple Bartlett at her Maine home overlooking Penobscot Bay. Her parents, Henry Parish II and Dorothy May “Sister” Parish, bought the property in the 1940s, although her family retreated to Islesboro for generations beforehand.
The structure’s bountiful windows funnel light to the home’s lower levels.
The roof deck oasis includes a roomy new head house, a replacement for a tinier rendition. “The copper cladding, an authentic metal found on many area head houses, will patina with age,” says architect Bob Paladino.
Cupp envisioned the new screened porch to be visible from the front entry, linking the barn to its landscape.
Views from the sitting room and deck offer infinite interest, regardless of the weather.
The revamped front porch sports a new teak floor and tiered teak railings. “This is a deliciously cool spot for enjoying evening cocktails,” interior designer Leslie Dunn says.
A glass railing and Adirondack chairs on the second-floor deck offer long vistas across the dunes, connecting the coastal scenery with the palette of the interior decor.
Views of conservation land are appetizers for relaxed outdoor meals.
Dinner is often enjoyed on the rear terrace.
The porch floors are cumaru, a Brazilian hardwood.
Beyond the boathouse, the second home on the property peeks through the trees.
Perched above a picturesque cove, the refurbished pool and deck area is a secluded bit of paradise.
Made of durable, mold-resistant Garapa Gold—a South American hardwood—the multi-level decks have lightened to a silvery gray that complements the shingled house.
The dining deck abuts the new addition and affords room for a generous table that’s used frequently. “The sunsets, the fog and mist—it’s all beautiful from here,” Park says.
Interior designer Anja Park created a lush landscape including a wisteria-draped pergola to link the handsomely refurbished main residence with the guest house.
Sparsely developed Lake Waramaug is best viewed from the comfort of an Adirondack chair.
The cottage roof slopes down from street level to shade the porch outside the second-floor bedrooms.
A shaded, lakeside granite patio sits between the cottage and the screen house.
The open part of the front porch has a gap at the base of the wall so water can drain out.
The front porch offers this lovely view. The house to the right is now privately owned but was once the Albonegon Inn, where Charlie Chaplin twice stayed.
The pool connects the main house and guesthouse in a unified landscape.
What looks like a well-appointed pool house is actually a gardening shed.
A custom Chippendale-inspired wood fence and fieldstone wall define the edges of the terrace—and keep the rabbits out.
The back lawn rolls right down to the water from which the Dillons originally spotted the property while kayaking.
Photo courtesy of Sudbury Design Group
Photo by Eric Roth
Photo courtesy of LeBlanc Jones Landscape Architects
Photo courtesy of LeBlanc Jones Landscape Architects
Photo by David Sundberg/Esto
Photo by Peter Vanderwarker
Photo by Peter Vanderwarker
A side porch is perfect for informal gatherings.
The back patio has gray stone tiles for continuity with the look and feel of the kitchen floor.
The generous deck wraps around the living room, increasing the home’s livable space. Interior designer Audrey Sterk elevates the outdoor area’s allure—as she has the whole house—with comfortable pieces that correlate with easy living and relaxation. The adjacent guest house/studio mimics the home’s design and provides bonus overnight accommodations.
The old fieldstone wall, which Gordon refurbished and reworked, is joined to the cedar fence by way of new cedar gates with bronze hardware. From the meadow side, due to the hilly topography, the wall reaches almost four feet in height.
: Bluestone paths lead to different areas of the garden and help keep feet dry when the grass is damp.
The inviting lawn terrace is an open-air room for play or entertaining.
Unlike today’s pool, which mirrors the lines of the architecture, the old pool was perpendicular to the house.
The red cedar pool fence will eventually weather to gray, making it a perfect fit for the garden’s understated palette.
The remodel included installing a pool in the corner created by the original house and a twentieth-century ell addition.
The sheep sculptures are by local artist Dan Falt, who has been welcoming children into his studio for art workshops since the homeowner and her designer were kids summering on the island.
A garden near the house holds seventeen varieties of roses, an arbor, and a swinging bench.
The wraparound porch makes a fine spot for outdoor dining and enjoying the garden views.
A lush landscape provides shade for the pool and inviting fire pit areas, where diving contests and s’mores are regular summer rituals.
The Wrights “have a clean and modern aesthetic,” says landscape architect Kristina Gates. “We removed plantings that blocked the house, added hedging, and created little moments to enjoy.”
A pagoda-inspired pergola makes a welcoming shelter by the pool.
Parquet-style teak flooring covers the expansive roof deck that sports an outdoor fireplace and flat-screen TV.
Cabinets with a built-in sink and refrigerator pair with a gas grill to create a seasonal open-air kitchen perfect for entertaining.
Festive flashlights lined up along the patio fence add nighttime ambience.
Windows abound at the rear of both cottage and studio, the better to gaze out over the water.
The backyard and pool area echo just enough of the geometry of the home to remain harmonic, while landscaping, ornamental flowers, discreet lighting, and a welcoming cabana soften the edges of a space used frequently for entertaining and family time.
The old, underutilized pool was replaced with a more organic design framed by granite pavers and the occasional protruding boulder.
The bluestone terrace is home to a fireplace and all-weather wicker seating.
Al fresco entertaining space was limited at the main house, so the owner made up for it at the barn, where an expansive pergola shelters the outdoor kitchen and dining area, and a pizza oven and an eighty-inch TV keep the party lively.
The screened porch looks over cornfields and a portion of the Appalachian Trail.
The home’s three-season, modified timber-frame screened-in porch is high enough off the ground to give it a tree-house feel.
Carefully selected elements, like a stone wall with a traditional look and the white dining canopy, play off the house and create a sense of unity.
Lighting at every step is as beautiful as it is functional, bathing the terraces in a soft glow and highlighting design features.
Lush, layered planting behind the white canopy gives the space a classic New England feel, even with the yard’s contemporary design and accents like the sleek dining table and chairs.
The full outdoor kitchen and bar are situated centrally for an ideal view of the pool.
A combination of textures and materials, from stone and oxidized steel to smooth pavers and lush vegetation, makes for a rich and naturally elegant poolscape.
A raised terrace with a fire pit is a fine setting for evening entertaining.
An understated water feature behind the chaises provides relaxing ambient sound.The full outdoor kitchen and bar are situated centrally for an ideal view of the pool.
The sunroom is everyone’s favorite, thanks to the curvaceous Acapulco rockers from Blackman Cruz that set the tone for the modern, stylish space. Designer Heather Wells adhered strictly to the black-and-white palette here, and used it throughout to keep the home airy, relaxed, and beachy-casual.
A spacious circular porch with idyllic views sits off the master bedroom.
The broad back porch offers plenty of room for an outdoor dinner party.
The sloping lot offers extensive views of the bay beyond from the home, from its many terraces and patios, and from the deck surrounding the infinity pool.
The pool house is an architectural nod to the main house.
Local fieldstone visually links the house with the terrace areas.
An environmentally protected coastal bank provides a natural buffer between the pool and the bay.
The plant-filled patio speaks to the owner’s passion for gardening.
Twin sheds and a shade-lending pergola anchor the pool area and complement the house.
The outdoor furniture is pale in tone and unadorned, to blend in with the sand and beach grasses.
The front porch’s mismatched furniture lends a “collected” look and adds a sense of history to the new home.
An outdoor dining room is located just steps from the pool and hot tub.
Sheltered under the back porch, a living and dining area allows the family to gather outside for much of the summer.
Below the second-floor master suite balcony, the pool, hot tub, and sitting and dining spaces converge for a multifunctional entertaining area.
The patio offers sweeping vistas of the estate on which the carriage-house-turned-condo sits.
The screened porch resembles a small A-frame cabin; breezes can blow right through the latticed wicker furniture.
The roof deck features discreet areas for dining, cooking, and lounging, all with spectacular views of the city.
A seating area.
A pergola-covered dining area.
The screened porch is furnished with comfy sofas and tea-height tables for casual eating and reading, making it a favorite gathering spot.
A sisal rug defines the sunroom’s dining area. Cheery curtains make a colorful frame for the view.
To update the existing outdoor furniture collection, Lapierre had the pieces repainted and outfitted with new pillows and umbrellas.
The conservatory doors open onto a stone patio and fireplace. A small deck off the master bedroom sits above the sunny passage between the kitchen area and the wet bar.
Slats and boards on the waterside deck mimic the interiors.
The owners enjoy their second-story porch all year long.
To integrate the pool with the landscape, “We conceived of the rectangular pool as a farm relic—perhaps the foundation for a farm structure,” says Horiuchi. Behind the pool, plantings on the sloping lawn will grow lush over time.
Stone mason Eben Armer hand selected each locust branch for this outdoor shower he designed and built.
The screened porch provides views of the poolhouse (which also functions as guest quarters) and the water. Stiving-Nichols and furniture maker Jeff Soderbergh collaborated on the design of the handsome reclaimed cypress dining table, one of several he crafted for the house.
The random sizes and shapes of the paving stones further the natural look of the landscaping.
In the screened porch, the vibe is casual, inviting lingering on slipcovered chairs and a large circular daybed from JANUS et Cie.
The screened porch on the third floor invites relaxation with swinging daybeds and a bird’s eye view of Quonochontaug Pond.
The rails of the floating dock are made of rope.
A sunny screened-in porch is cooled by Cape Cod breezes and scattered with comfy chairs atop a Stark area rug.
Winding steps of uneven rock lead from dock to house for a more nature-in-the-raw experience.