Sketches of the side facing the road, and the side facing the water
A FAMILY MOUNTAIN RETREAT
Nantahala Lake, Topton, North Carolina
What was needed:
Something unique, planned for a steep, irregular site, saving as many trees as
possible, with a view of the isolated mountain lake below. This home must be
stunning and it must provide lots of space for many visiting family and friends.
They wanted this designed to be built in two stages. They loved the Balinesian
tropical style resorts.
Our first step:
The property was very steep and complicated. There were many trees. To
preserve more trees, the clients ordered a survey to locate each one on a
topographical plan. I also documented the direction of the view.
I designed two structures connected by a glassed in bridge. This bridge allowed
water to drain down the steep site between the buildings. The upper section had
a garage and the accomodations for the guests. The lower section had their
private master suite and the living areas.
The great room was on the upper level and was centered on a corner with tall
glass on both sides. There was a built in pit seating area for twenty, with the backs
of the seating level with the kitchen and dining floors. This provided a large,
intimate seating area that did not block the down hill views from the kitchen or
My favorite feature was the master bathroom. Situated below grade on the street
side, I planned an undergound courtyard open to the sky, surrounded by
concrete walls, open to the bathroom. This would provide mellow outdoor lighting
and a private outdoor space for the bathroom. I planned for a quiet space with a
water feature and an oriental rock garden.
This home was not built. Sometimes the most extravagent projects end up not
working out. But this illustrates some ways to plan an interesting project on a
New Homes I Designed
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(800)738-8781 P.O. Box 446, Murphy, North Carolina 28906
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