Long Island, New York

CLIENT Confidential
PROGRAM Private residence for a patriarch and his four children’s future families, including parents’ home, four children’s homes, and (A-Z) bar, billiards, children’s play space, event space, garage, gym, home cinema, indoor and outdoor swimming pools, library, spa, staff support areas, study, and wine cellar
AREA 3,800 m² (41,300 sf)
COST Confidential
STATUS  Invited competition, first prize 2013; Construction Documents completed 2017; completion expected 2021
PERSONNEL  Julie Bauer, Tim Burwell, Maur Dessauvage, Shereen Doummar, Mahasti Fakourbayat, Alysen Hiller (PL), Gabriel Jewell-Vitale, James Kehl, James Killeavy, Min Kim, Elizabeth Nichols, Kelsey Olafson, Joshua Ramus, Raul Rodriguez (PL), Emma Silverblatt, Elina Spruza Chizmar (PL), Michele Tonizzo, Vaidotas Vaiciulis, Michael Volk, Danny Wei
COMPETITION TEAM Alberto Cumerlato, Mette Fast, Tyler Hopf, Gabriel Jewell-Vitale, Joshua Ramus, Elina Spruza Chizmar (PL), Aude Soffer, Minyoung Song, Cristina Webb
CONSULTANTS ACS, ASW, CSI, Front, LaGuardia Landscape Architecture, Kean Development, Knippers Helbig, Severud Associates, Sidney Bowne, Tillotson Design Associates

Long Island, New York

CLIENT Confidential
PROGRAM Private residence for a patriarch and his four children’s future families, including parents’ home, four children’s homes, and (A-Z) bar, billiards, children’s play space, event space, garage, gym, home cinema, indoor and outdoor swimming pools, library, spa, staff support areas, study, and wine cellar
AREA 3,800 m² (41,300 sf)
COST Confidential
STATUS Invited competition, first prize 2013; Design Development completed 2016; completion expected 2018
PERSONNEL Tim Burwell, Alberto Cumerlato, Mahasti Fakourbayat, Mette Fast, Alysen Hiller (PL), Tyler Hopf, Gabriel Jewell-Vitale, Min Kim, Elizabeth Nichols, Joshua Prince-Ramus, Raul Rodriguez (PL), Emma Silverblatt, Aude Soffer, Minyoung Song, Elina Spruza (PL), Michele Tonizzo, Cristina Webb, Vaidotas Vaiciulis, Michael Volk
CONSULTANTS ACS, ASW, CSI, Front, Kean Development, Knippers Helbig, SMD, Tillotson Design

A patriarch dreams of building a family residence—“a jewel box for individual lifestyles”—in which he, his wife, his four children, and each of their four families will reside. Three of the children are currently too young to have families of their own, or to define their future needs and desires. A building concept is therefore required that can accommodate families who do and do not yet exist. The patriarch’s other major wishes are that the ensemble of five homes have the architectural integrity of a single building, that the building look as though it had always been part of the site, and that it incorporate a ceremonial stair.

To create a structure where each home can be experienced autonomously and as a component of a larger domestic network, the residence’s program…

…is organized into a necklace…

…whose gems consist of the five homes and three shared pavilions—an event space, an entertainment space (including bar, billiards, library, study, and outdoor swimming pool), and a children’s play area. A second tier beneath the main level includes garage, gym, home cinema, indoor swimming pool, staff area, spa, and wine cellar.

The extraordinary site commands views out to the ocean from a high bluff on one side, and into a dense, old-growth forest on the other. Straddling the line between these radically different landscapes, the necklace achieves a residential Holy Grail, existing simultaneously at the beach and in the woods. Each of the five homes is thereby afforded different site experiences: ocean, forest, or half-and-half.



While the ocean-side of the residence is on grade, its forest side extends horizontally into the tree canopy due to the site’s steep drop-off,…

…creating a tree-house experience for its residents.

To address the possible needs and proclivities of families who do not yet exist, each of the five homes embraces a distinct living typology: pinwheel house, checkerboard house, stripe house, barcode house, and dice house. Should the four children and their families live permanently at the residence, this palette of homes will provide them options that can accommodate their lifestyle preferences. Should they only make frequent visits to the residence, they can enjoy different architectural and site experiences upon each stay.

The residence’s exterior is wrapped in mirror glass such that upon approach, the building disappears into the site. The effect reduces the perception of the structure’s large mass and, by looking like it is not there at all, actually achieves the patriarch’s desire for a structure that “looks as if it has always been part of the site.” 

Driving under the residence’s elevated components, one enters the courtyard: a secret garden surrounded by a ring of clear glass with a circular walkway behind, which tie this three-generational-family campus together visually.

Plan Level -1

Plan Level 1

Plan Level 2

Overlooking the courtyard garden, the circular walkway is the physical connector amongst all the residence’s gems. It is lined by a simple cherrywood wall that morphs—as if sculpted or rolled by hand—into functional yet playful, ribbon-like objects within the three pavilions. At each home’s courtyard perimeter, this wood wall is divided into full-height, pivoting panels that can open up the home or close it off,…

…when families want to engage each other or want privacy.

In the Event Pavilion, the wood wall transforms into a ceremonial double stair,…

Event Pavilion

…which connects the eight upper gems to the below grade spaces, descending directly into the wine bar and home cinema, adjacent to the indoor pool and spa. To create a sense of surprise, four walls of switchable, electrochromic glass ‘cage’ the stair. 

With the flick of a switch, this space can become an expansive foyer as the glass reveals the wine racks and indoor pool, or an intimate chamber, when both are obscured. 

In the Entertainment Pavilion, the wood wall morphs to define a bar, library, and study.

Entertainment Pavilion

And in the Children’s Play Pavilion, the wood wall becomes an informal video/gaming area and slide.

Children’s Play Pavilion

The Necklace Residence is the realization of the patriarch’s dream: a family haven, whose horizontality, reflectivity, and transparency integrate it ‘naturally’ into the landscape, and exalt the duality of its majestic site.

Images Credits: 11. 12: Luxigon

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