A Lakefront Home "Engulfed" in Nature

From Margaret Everton on July 6, 2010 in Chicago

Not many homeowners would be comfortable with the idea of their foundation shifting under nature’s every whim, but Irving Stenn and Judith Racht, as architect Laurence Booth would discover, were a different breed entirely. They wanted nothing more than to be engulfed in the environment of their lakefront Michigan home, which meant accepting everything nature had to offer.

chicago lakefront landcapechicago lakefront woodThe backdrop of what became a 2,300-square-foot project was only slightly more beautiful than the home itself. Lake Michigan laps at the shore a short distance behind, while the structure sits atop a dune and backs a spectacular forest. Racht described her vision in one succinct statement: “I wanted the house to be hunkered down inside the landscape.”

Realizing the damage that the environment can wreak on a beachside home, Booth made sure to use materials that could withstand the test of time. Among them were zinc-clad copper exterior and aluminum-framed windows.

chicago lakefront living roomchicago lakefront kitchenWarm wood tones serve as the backdrop for a nature-inspired color palette used throughout the home. Subtle concrete flooring and stainless steel provide a bit of contrast to the kitchen.

Contemporary furniture and a fireplace set in stone allow a sense of comfort without taking away from the 360-degree views.

Adding immensely to the feel of this vacation home are an outside guest house and screened-in porch. Both encourage relaxation and allow the couple to share their escape with friends and family.

After experiencing the beautiful sunsets and living through some dramatic thunderstorms, the couple agreed that their nature-inspired gamble paid off. And if they ever need a reminder, one look at their home will prove it.

chicago lakefront porchchicago lakefront sunroom

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