1. Discuss

2. Design

3. Create

The original seasonal cottage, built nearly 30 years ago, had only a few small windows looking out toward the bay and the rooms were small and dark. But it was situated in a wonderful spot on the site, very close to the forest grove to the south and was perched up on a ridge facing due west with spectacular sunsets and 200 feet of shallow sandy shoreline on the east arm of Grand Traverse Bay.

The guiding principle behind the design: keep it simple. We saved the original cottage’s foundation and the exterior wall/roof framing were stripped down to the studs. The taller flat roofed (living/dining) addition, doubles as a balcony from the second floor master bedroom, has wrap-around floor to ceiling windows looking out toward the bay and the transom windows provide enough breeze to eliminate the need for first-floor air conditioning. The exterior is cedar siding and it will weather to gray, windows/doors are anodized aluminum frames and the roof is galvalume metal. IPE hardwood is used for all interior flooring/trim and exterior decks (sustainably harvested) and cable railings, the dark stained laminated beams and stainless steel columns support the open floor plan on the main floor. The free-standing fireplace is located at the center of the cottage and the exposed stainless steel chimney flue continues through to the master bedroom above. The second floor bedroom gables have floor to ceiling windows and instead of mirrors above the vanity in the master bathroom, a wall of windows looks out at the forest grove.

LOCATION: Elk Rapids, Michigan

Photography © 2007 Carrie Acosta Photography LLC

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