Spectacular Dorsey Residence on Bainbridge Island

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The Dorsey Residence is a contemporary family home designed by Coates Design Architects on Bainbridge Island, Washington. The design concept was to maximize the home’s footprint through the use of vertical space. From the outside, the residence is an anonymous, austere, monumental concrete facade anchored deep into the hillside on a waterfront property. Much of the 2,800 square foot home is hidden behind the two-story concrete face. Upon entering, an entirely different experience is revealed on the inside: warm, light, and open. The back facade of the home is comprised mostly of glazing, illuminating the interior with natural light and offering spectacular views of the Olympic Mountains and the water. The main living area opens out onto a large deck that cantilevers from the home’s structure, providing a seamless connection from inside to out.

The kitchen invites guests to sit at a beautifully crafted bar designed with caramelized bamboo, gloss laminate, and a three-way mitre corner. The refrigerator, wine cooler, and washer and dryer are visually hidden within the custom built cabinetry. The stairway is lit by a large skylight above, and is made of customized blackened steel and wood that was milled from a tree previously located on the property. 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. The exterior concrete 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.

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Photos: Courtesy of Coates Design Architects


1 Comment on "Spectacular Dorsey Residence on Bainbridge Island"

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Gloria Larravide

I am having trouble with the lack of direction for the design of the windows in the house. Or it is large windows without panes- with smaller ones on the floor for ventilation that can be opened, if needed. Or making the ‘design’ a commitment in more than just having different sized windows and thick thin panes.