Amazing lakefront Berkshires retreat with warm and inviting living spaces

modern rustic lake house exterior

Winkelman Architecture has designed this year-round lakefront retreat on Stockbridge Bowl, a lake in the southern Berkshires, Massachusetts. The distinguishing attribute is the unique asset the tight lakefront building zone offered to the ultimate building design — a pedestrian bridge linking two separate building forms.  

This five-bedroom scheme features an owner’s bedroom suite, living, dining, kitchen, and screened porch all situated on the ground level to accommodate aging in place. Each space is lined up to have front-row lake views. A guest suite is situated on the second level.

DESIGN DETAILS: ARCHITECT Winkelman Architecture BUILDER Chris May Builders LANDSCAPE ARCHITECT Richardson & Associates

modern rustic lake house exterior

A unique approach was taken in situating the three additional guest suites, or ‘cabins’, as they were imagined (there is one for each of their grown kids). The ‘cabins’ are situated on the second level of the semi-attached garage that is nested into a steep hillside behind the main structure.

modern rustic lake house exterior

A footbridge connects these cabins with the second floor of the main structure where there is a den for informal gatherings with a kitchenette. A stair descends from there to the main level entry, kitchen, and dining areas.

modern rustic lake house exterior at dusk

There is also a spacious second-floor deck off this den for seating, boasting sweeping views over the lake.

modern rustic living room

This configuration, which is an exploded second-floor plan, represents a bit of social engineering. It locates the housing for the three grown kids far enough away from the main building for their independence, but close enough for their inclusion. This also minimized the building’s overall massing by breaking it up into two smaller parts.

modern rustic great room

What We Love: This lakefront retreat in the Berkshires offers its inhabitants a wonderful respite for enjoying peaceful water views. It’s the ultimate home for gathering with extended family members, we love how the structure has been designed for privacy and socializing. The great room is warm and inviting with its fabulous floor-to-ceiling fireplace and large windows that flood the space with natural light.

Tell Us: What are your thoughts on the design of this house? Would you change any details if this was your getaway home? Let us know in the Comments below!

Note: Check out a couple of other fabulous home tours that we have featured here on One Kindesign in the state of Massachusetts: A historic home on Nantucket Island gets a beautifully charming update and A historic seaside cottage gets a charming makeover in Vineyard Haven

modern rustic kitchen

modern rustic kitchen

modern rustic living room with a fireplace

modern rustic living room

modern rustic bedroom

modern rustic lake house exterior

The building’s design, featuring shed roof elements interconnected with flat roof planes, is a response to the lake views and daylight by opening up and out toward both.

modern rustic lake house exterior with a bridge

The bridge acts as a ‘gateway’ to the building zone, as the driveway passes under it, from the public (and hill) side to the private/car-yard (and water-related) side.

modern rustic lake house exterior

The garage/cabin portion is nested into the hillside to minimize the visual impact further. To be cost-effective, the three ‘cabins’ are linked by being on the same base structure, the three-car garage. They are grounded by connecting to grade on the uphill side.

modern rustic lake house exterior with a fire pit at dusk

The driveway’s descent down the hill was re-configured to make it less steep so that it could be used year-round. At the top of the hill, the orientation of the sight lines with the carving of the land was choreographed to suggestively introduce the building’s forms below while having nature frame the view.

modern rustic lake house exterior with a long driveway


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