This contemporary home with stellar views over Siesta Key and the lights of downtown Sarasota, makes use of every available passive and active sustainable system. Keeping in line with its modern appeal, D & D Garage Doors installed stucco textured Clopay Modern Steel doors with a Wi-Fi operated lift. Digital Homes Corporation provided the Elan g! automation system to easily control security, door locks, surveillance, lighting, pool, motorized shading, music, and televisions using the fixed wall keypad or smart device. The home built by NWC Construction won the SEBC Grand Aurora Award for “Best Green Construction and Water-Wise Home” and a Silver Aurora for the “Best Solar Energy Home.”
Like the fingers of one skillful hand, architect, builder, and interior designer worked together to create not only a unique and stunning contemporary home on Sarasota Bay, but one that literally helps save the planet. The team’s brilliant work was judged as one of the top three sustainable homes in the U.S., beating marquee projects in environmentally conscious California.
The floating staircase was designed as a light well, and centerpiece of the home. Builder Cross’s artisan carpenters built the stair treads out of 3 1/2-inch rough boards, hand-covered by hickory wood veneers, to exactly match the hue and texture of the engineered wood flooring. Utilizing creative engineering, Cross made the staircase a ribbon of tubular welded steel and tempered glass, with a nine-foot bridge, allowing users to gently ascend to the mezzanine level with its show-stopping water views.
Waterfall-edged White Statuario marble atop custom white cabinetry hosts a walnut block ledge, which acts as additional buffet space. Sub-Zero, Thermador, and Miele appliances from Ferguson Bath, Kitchen & Lighting Gallery benefit the chef, while guests can enjoy cocktails from the hidden bar found in the wavy-fronted cabinetry topped with Negresco granite. A horizontal walnut stick light illuminates the counter.
Matching dove gray Minotti Andersen sofas flank the Bauhaus–inspired black wood coffee table in the main living room. The Knoll MR Lounge chair features black Spinneybeck leather upholstery. Visible on the outside deck is an outdoor grouping by Brown Jordan and a chair and matching table by Eames from Herman Miller.
A trio of Norma stools wrapped in black saddle leather offers comfortable seating at the counter of Statuario marble. Three black tube Artemide Myako pendants provide diffused lighting. Floating kitchen cabinetry abuts the top and bottom windows, rendering a backsplash unnecessary, and making use of natural light. Beyond, in this level’s living room, a wall of walnut holds a linear gas fireplace and bi-fold doors that hide the television.
How to light the dining room’s Cattelan Scorpio table and Arcadia chairs with a ceiling of two different heights, posed only a temporary problem for designer Lowe. He created a 3D model, indicating where to place 22 individual LED sphere lights from the Bocci Collection. Cross then placed lasers on the floor, aimed upward, to indicate where the independent wiring for each should go, prior to hanging drywall. Lowe also hung all artwork and walked the home, fine-tuning the illumination of each, as on the staircase’s main landing.
Architect Jonathan Parks actually moved in with the owners for a few days at their Memphis home in order to understand what was important to them. Because of the site restrictions, this home would be 60-percent smaller than their previous home and set on a lot only five-feet away from both their neighbors’ properties. The owners were also passionate about saving the environment, while maximizing the water views. Together the team, “set about designing tomorrow’s home today,” with the sustainable goal of less reliance on the power grid.
Builder Nathan Cross of NWC Construction masterfully executed every element of the plans. Cross brought to the project many talents along with one invaluable trait—his unapologetic perfectionism. “I have heard other builders say there is no such thing as a perfect house,” says Cross. “I don’t believe that and I set out to build just that.”
That perfectionism had Cross on-site every day, running bulldozers, building stair treads by hand, and rehanging doors multiple times until they suited his ever-critical eye. “We don’t just pass inspections, we create art,” says Cross. “I personally make sure that the entire project gets built the way it is supposed to be built and ends up not just as a house, but a truly happy home.” Midway through the project the owner declared Cross’ hiring, “one of the best decisions he had ever made”.
As construction reached completion, the project was turned over to the highly skilled and creative hands of interior designer David K. Lowe of Dwell Interiors. His years of experience working with architectural firms ensured his design would not only complement but enhance mindful labors of Parks and Cross.
“The environment of the home had to be holistic and enhance the design of the architecture,” says Lowe. Happily, Lowe is also a devotee of modernist design. He says, “In my opinion, less really is more.”
Clad in a treated cotton blend, the Soft Square sectional resists stains in this children’s’ living room. Polished Haifa Jerusalem limestone proves indestructible inside and the same stone, unpolished for surer footing, paves the pool deck. The 600-pound accordion door opens and closes at the touch of the littlest of fingers, providing passive cooling without letting cold air out into the environment. Under the tongue-and-groove cypress ceiling with Minke fan, adults can watch the kids and enjoy the Brown Jordan Flight seating group, clad in metallic Salt Air mesh.
This hidden guest bath brings a sense of serendipity to a utilitarian space. Using concealed and silent cabinetry-grade SOSS hinges, the heavy walnut vault door—which Cross hung three times to perfect the balance—opens with a gentle push and closes again to form a wide frame for the artwork. Within the bath, the shower sports a Classico-Zebrino porcelain tile with swirls of light and dark taupe.
The unique loft balcony hovers 38-feet above the water, offering the feeling of floating in space, thanks to hidden supports. An aluminum and stainless-steel wire glassless fence offers an unobstructed view over the barrier islands. A Brown Jordan Still sectional surrounds the Lowe-designed polished concrete fire table and matching planters atop Trex Decks composite recycled flooring.
An 18-foot concrete beam is cantilevered three stories above the pool deck, using flying trusses, affording volume and shade that lowers the temperature in the home’s interior. Though the windows and doors are facing east, highly reflective Turtle glass affords stunning sunset views. Digital Homes Corporation addressed the owner’s concerns about keeping small children safe around the energy-efficient pool by adding a smart-phone alert which notifies them when the doors to the pool area are opened.
Written by Kitt Walsh
Photography by Ryan Gamma
D & D Garage Doors
Digital Homes Corporation
2231 Sarasota Center Blvd.
Sarasota, FL 34240
2170 Main Street, Suite 101
Sarasota, FL 34237
Ferguson Bath, Kitchen & Lighting Gallery
2451 17th Street
Sarasota, FL 34234