Coates Design has designed the Dorsey Residence in Bainbridge Island, Washington, USA. This custom island house symbolizes its owner. From the outside, the home is an anonymous, almost austere, monumental concrete facade anchored deep into the hillside on a waterfront property. Much of the home is hidden behind the two-story concrete face. Upon entering, it becomes clear that it is an entirely different experience on the inside: warm, light, and open.
An 18-inch concrete wall forms two sides of the building’s exterior providing a poignant counterpoint to the warm wooden and copper “box” form that rests at a slight angle to take full advantage of the site’s water and mountain views. The concrete exterior wall and exposed concrete within the home reduce energy costs by serving as a thermal mass that naturally cools the home in the summer and holds warmth in the winter.
Each room within the home was carefully designed to take advantage of views, provide comfort to the occupants, and an appealing style. With only a small buildable area available on the site, the home was designed to maximize the footprint through the use of vertical space which also takes advantage of the spectacular views of Puget Sound and Olympic Mountains to the West. The close proximity to the street is softened by native landscaping and a stone gabion retaining wall. The back facade of the home has an abundance of windows, which illuminate the interior livable space, maximizing the spectacular views of the Olympic Mountains and the water. The main living opens out onto a large deck that cantilevers from the home’s structure, providing a seamless connection from inside to out.
The kitchen offers a beautifully crafted bar designed with caramelized bamboo, gloss laminate, and a three-way mitre corner. Visually hidden in custom built cabinetry in the pantry next to the kitchen are the refrigerator, washer and dryer, and wine cooler which save space and provide a clutter-free kitchen.
The interior of the home is well-lit, with clear glazing making up nearly all of its view to the backyard and Puget Sound. The stairs, lit by a large skylight above, are made of customized blackened steel and the wood was milled from a tree previously located on the property. With 12-foot-tall ceilings, the three-story home leaves an indelible sensation of openness and inspiration with all who visit.
+ Project credits / data
Project: Dorsey Residence
Size: 2,800 sf
Location: Bainbridge Island, Washington, USA
Architect & interior designer: Matthew Coates | Coates Design | http://www.coatesdesign.com
General contractor: Rob Smallwood
Landscape architect: Jack Johnson – Outdoor Studio
Photographer / photo credits: Courtesy Coates Design – Exterior shots | Roger Turk-Northlight Photography – Interior shots
+ About Coates Design
Coates Design is an architecture firm located in Seattle and Bainbridge Island, Washington.
The firm has been focused on green building and sustainable design from its inception. The firm’s managing partner, Matthew Coates, achieved International acclaim by winning the “Cradle to Cradle (C2C) Home” Design Competition in 2005 and used this creative momentum to jump-start the Coates Design practice.
Matthew is an award-winning architect, with over 15 years of design and consulting experience. He is forward-thinking, focusing on where architecture and sustainable designs are heading – using technology to promote the most versatile, efficient and innovative use of energy and materials.
Matthew is the recipient of numerous honors and awards and has been featured on radio, television and published in respected periodicals including: Wall Street Journal, Dwell, Men’s Journal, Professional Builder, and The New York Times.
Within the past few years, the Coates Design group has completed (among many other projects) a LEED Platinum residence and a LEED Gold Children’s museum, and began designing a home intended to meet the criteria of the Net-Zero “Living Building Challenge.”
Is that buildings, when thoughtfully designed, will uplift the spirit, nourish the mind and contribute to the health of our bodies, while respecting the environment in which they are placed.
Is fluid and focused. Every project is different, yet there is one constant in the way we work: whether your project is a small renovation or a commercial development, our design solutions will be a direct manifestation of your project goals and site context. The success of any building project relies greatly on its relationship with the surrounding landscape.
With Coates Design, you will get a customized, innovative approach to your design and building needs along with responsible and effective sustainable-design solutions.