New Hamptons Style
Blaze Makoid Architecture
Wheaton Way is a luxury home located in the hamlet of Water Mill near the town of Southampton on Long Island, the haunt of wealthy New Yorkers. It extends over an area of almost a thousand square metres on a 5 hectare agricultural fruit-growing estate located in a flat green rural landscape dotted with occasional stands of trees. Almost as a reaction to the flatness of the surrounding countryside, the architects from the practice BMA led by founder Blaze Makoid and Glen Cordova, with offices in Bridgehampton, NY and Miami, conceived the home in terms of a series of stacked „boxes“ of different sizes and materials according to their functions, a tribute to the villas of Ludwig Mies van der Rohe. These parallelepipeds create a striking alternation of solids and voids, light and shadows and offer constantly changing views that make the building a very pleasant place to live, both inside and out.
On the ground floor, about ten metres apart and suspended above a basement level, stand two white volumes housing the generously sized socialisation areas – the living room, dining area and professional kitchen – as well as the private areas, particularly the junior suite. Extending lengthwise above them like a kind of connecting bridge is a transparent rectangular volume with full-height glazing that offers splendid views of the surrounding wetlands, Mecox Bay and the ocean and houses a series of serviced suites. The bridge-like structure also serves as a roof covering over the space between the two ground-floor volumes, creating a sheltered outdoor area accessible from the two sides of the house. Closed off on one side by a stone brick wall and on the other by a glass curtain wall enclosing a suspended staircase leading to the upper level, this area is a kind of open-air lounge with a conversation area centred around a stone fireplace, a dining area with hi-tech grill, and bar facilities. Beyond the roof covering provided by the uppermost volume, the space contains a second open-air conversation area, an infinity pool surrounded by loungers and a fireplace, and a flight of steps leading to the garden where the owners can entertain guests on summer evenings. The basement is also designed as a living and leisure space and features additional bedrooms and bathrooms, a relaxation room and study, a wine room, a home theatre and a gym.
BMA devoted special attention to the choice of materials, including the light grey brick used to clad the walls of the open-air space and the corridor in the upper volume as well as the glass that encloses the same volume and the ground floor socialisation area. But it is above all the choice of Italian porcelain that brings a touch of Italy to much of the home, specifically the large number of tiles from the Florim Group’s brand Casa dolce casa – Casamood that Makoid and Cordova included in their specifications. The sophisticated yet discreet look of the concrete-effect large-format tiles from the Studios collection was chosen for the floors in several rooms in the living area and in one of the bathrooms. Their delicately tactile texture evokes the craftsmanship and plasticity of an artisanal finish, while the neutral colours and tones available in the Brick and Cloud finishes accentuate the refined simplicity and relaxing atmospheres of the overall project. Muted tones were chosen for the corridors, outdoor areas and swimming pool in the form of resin-textured tiles from the Materia Project collection. The bathrooms stand out for their elegant contemporary aesthetic created by the luminous surfaces of the B&W Marble range, which in the White version are also used to clad the furniture. For the luxurious master bathroom, BMA creatively used Prexious of Rex marble-effect surfaces from the Rex brand, also part of the Florim group, to clad the bathtub, opting in particular for the intensely fluid veining of the Dream Arabesque version. This dynamic continuity of the flooring in terms of material and colour between the indoor and outdoor spaces is never monotonous and instead creates the illusion of expanded space, reinforcing the relationship between the home and its surroundings, both physically and psychologically. In its white luminosity and meticulously designed floor plan, the home provides an utterly convincing neomodern and poetically minimalist interpretation of the renowned Hamptons Style dominant on Long Island and beyond.