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3 April 2023

Explore a Tailor-Made Hamptons Oasis Where the Gardens Come First

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Starting a project with a blank slate can be a blessing or a curse, depending on the elements involved. In the case of this home, the harmonious ensemble included a discerning pair of owners and their growing family, a private few-acre lot in the historic district of Southampton, New York, and an unparalleled group of creative professionals. Fortunately, everyone shared a singular vision—and that was firmly rooted in the landscape.

“So much of the architecture and my focus was making sure that the house opened up to the gardens and to the property,” says AD100 designer Victoria Hagan of the multiyear collaboration. “Our client made it very clear what they were looking for, and it was fun to work with them to create something that had a very traditional soul but felt much younger at heart.”

To achieve that aim, Hagan—working alongside AD100 Ferguson & Shamamian architects Andrew Oyen and Oscar Shamamian, who were the first to join the project, and AD100 landscape designer Miranda Brooks—set about imbuing the interiors with a sense of openness. Hagan instinctively reached for a softer palette of aquatic blues, deep woods, oatmeal, and rich celadon. The materials, from the window treatments to the counters and bathroom tiles, are luxe, to be sure, but the mix prizes comfort and performance over pretense. The owners, a Manhattan-based couple with four children in their teens and twenties, “wanted to live in a fresher way,” shares Hagan. Therefore, entertaining spaces needed to be both plentiful and conducive to impromptu plop-downs. Several porches around the home’s perimeter further satisfied that mandate while also strengthening its connection to the surrounding green spaces.

Children and their guests notwithstanding, much consideration was given to how the principals live when devising the facade and floor plan. “We worked with them for such a long time that we understood them,” says Oyen, who along with Shamamian had overseen several projects spanning over 30 years with the couple. “They’re very different people. The husband was a diplomat; he’s extraordinarily gracious. His wife is a little bit more free-spirited.” In this house, however, they aligned, envisioning a shingle-style abode that conveyed traditional Southampton panache outside and clean, contemporary style inside.

For her part, the wife, an enthusiastic gardener, installed her nexus—a flower-cutting room and an office—near the buzzy kitchen and back entrance (the family’s main ingress) so she could be close to her plants and in the midst of everyday comings and goings. The husband’s primary hideaway is an oak-clad study. “He’s a busy man,” shares Oyen, “and he wanted a library that was big and comfortable enough that his children could come and keep him company.” The room, which is visible from the front of the house, was buffered by moving the driveway to the side of the lot and installing a parterre with a fountain before its windows and the home’s formal entrance. That tranquil, car-free space perfectly suited the clients’ vision of living in a village and having neighboring friends stroll over for casual Saturday suppers.

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