The T(EA) House is sited on a long, linear lot that reaches out toward views of the Long Island Sound. Three volumes (“primitives”), similar in size, are linked together by a sculptural staircase, the middle volume pivoting 90 degrees at the intersection of landscape and building and producing the T shaped form.
The site is conceived of as an active landscape, with the interior program spilling out into the surrounding gardens, creating pockets of programed exterior space of both hardscape and softscape that take advantage of the linearity of the site.
A long, processional pathway defines the main axis from which the architecture pivots around, demarcating the formal entry of the house and terminating at the grand, three-story staircase. The staircase performs as a voided link between the three volumes lifting up and mimicking the character of a lantern to define a quite loft space with access to the roof garden.
To the North of the entry axis, the volumes are firmly grounded with the living spaces on the first floor and the sleeping spaces above. The third, pivoting volume is wrapped with a glass curtain wall and floats lightly atop the landscape, creating expansive views to the surrounding gardens and the Long Island Sound. The Master Suite perches above and is accessed by a private corridor offering privileged views of the lap pool and gardens.
The T(EA) House is conceptualized using a contrasting pallet of both organic and inorganic materials. The indoor living spaces are wrapped in Alaskan Yellow Cedar and accented with a folding acrylic stucco façade. Large glass curtain walls bring light into the indoor rooms and polished stainless steel reflects the colors of the surrounding landscape and sky.
The landscape is defined by board-formed concrete planters that create rigid boundaries characterized by organic textures to coexist in harmony with the lush gardens. A portfolio of garden typologies including rain, herb, shade, gravel and heather gardens, are sprinkled throughout the landscape, organized by Bluestone walkways and flower trellises and shaded by the canopies of Ginko, Maple and Magnolia trees. A generous 83-foot long lap pool paralleled by the rhythm of eight Ginko trees further expresses the liner structure of the site, its reflections and color referencing the sparkling water of the Sound just beyond.