Located on a former horse ranch with rolling green pastures, Genius Loci enjoys one of the highest locations in Montauk. Taking in views of the surrounding landscape as well as the ocean below, the home seeks to blend into the site rather than stand out. Partially embedded into the steep slope, the home is protected from the environment by the earth from the south. Although it is buried into the earth, the home is not compromised in terms of access, views or natural light. Approaching from the south, the home appears to be a made up of two, low ranch-style buildings, but from the other side, it is a much more impressive project.
A wood-screened bridge connects the two volumes together and cedar shingles are used to clad the buildings and help them blend in. Natural daylighting finds its way in through floor to ceiling windows and clerestory windows, but is cleverly shaded to minimize overheating, glare and provide additional privacy. Large overhangs and roll down shades on the south reduce solar gain, while large pocket doors open to create natural cross breezes and reduce the need for air conditioning. A geothermal well provides energy efficient heating and cooling and the home makes use of eco-friendly and low VOC finishes. Completed in 2011, the home has already received a number of awards and was recently named as a 2012 Architectural Record House.
Images ©Michael Moran