estes/twombly architects, newport, r.i.

The 1.2-acre waterfront site was the biggest influence on the design of this 2,600-square-foot house, says architect James Estes. Thus, an exuberant waterfront facade presents an ample deck and large double-hung windows to the expansive views, and wide overhanging eaves shade both from the sun. The living room, dining room, and kitchen--anchored by a large Pennsylvania fieldstone fireplace--also cleave to the waterfront side.

A two-story bedroom wing comes at the view sideways, connecting to the main structure at its broad side. Estes calls the sleeping quarters "a kind of bunkhouse." Lesser rooms (a study, the laundry room) collect at the front of the house, which hunkers down protectively to greet the street.

With such prime real estate, it would have been easy to get carried away, but Estes showed considerable restraint. "We tried to max out the lot, though it is a very reasonable size house," he says. The judges agreed, calling the house "consistent" and "not the least bit overwrought."

project architect: James Estes, Estes/Twombly Architects
general contractor: Wes Deane, Highland Builders, Tiverton, R.I.
landscape architect: Martha Moore, Tiverton
project size: 2,600 square feet
site size: 1.2 acres
construction cost: Withheld
photographer: Michael Mathers