Tucked into the hillside like a bona fide banked barn, this proud, compact house catches your eye as you drive by the mix of new homes and historic farm houses. The full-height stone foundation, red cedar shingles, and arched porch openings combine into a curious amalgam of austerity and luxury, Shaker and shingle style. Situated on a small lot with high, long-range water views, this split-level design offers a wide variety of flexible and sensible room layouts. High ceilings and half-levels create unique adjacencies of single- and double-height spaces. Porches are integrated into the envelope of the house, rather than being tacked on in the fashion of island farm houses, providing covered outdoor areas on the second and third levels while remaining faithful to the massing of a working barn.
Post & beam construction is a traditional method of barn building, where the beauty of the framing materials and joinery are exposed so they can be seen and appreciated. Structural Insulated Panels (SIPs) are sandwiches of interior paneling, heavy duty insulation and exterior sheathing, and are the ‘skin’ of the building. This time honored craft of post & beam framing is combined with super energy efficient SIPs which install quickly, and provide a weather-tight and toasty enclosure in just a few days—a solution that saves on time, people power and fuel. A mix of reclaimed and new lumber, contrasts of dark and light, old and new, hand-made and machined typifies the recurring theme of contrasts that make Hilltop House a wonder-filled and sublime retreat.