Named “Seijaku” by its designers, this project embodies this Japanese principle of quiet and stillness, in which all sense of disturbance is absent. The 40-plus-year-old home on Florida's Gulf Coast had faced its share of storms and flooding. Now, the newly reconstructed main house, with impact-resistant window walls and doors, is better prepared to withstand foul weather. Yet, said the judges, “it doesn't seem alien [to its location].”
To accomplish the transformation, the existing 3,970-square-foot main house had to be detached and lifted 6 feet to extend the existing foundation walls so the house would meet the required base flood elevation. Once this was accomplished, the limitations for renovating structures within flood zones were eliminated, and the house was demolished down to the existing structural floor system and rebuilt. The designers were able to add a 1,761-square-foot guest house, a covered walkway, and a pool/spa.
The owners, who travel frequently to the Far East, achieved their contemporary Asian-style home — which complements the ocean and natural setting — through the use of warm wood, natural stone, and native vegetation. “The outdoor space pulls the project together,” the judges said. “There's a fluidity with the outdoors that you want in a beach house. Why take a vacation if you live here?”
Category: Whole-house remodeling, over $500,000
Location: Sarasota, Fla.
Contractor: Michael K. Walker, Michael K. Walker & Associates, Sarasota
Designer: Mark H. Smith, AIA, Smith Architects, Sarasota