Design Year Book

Design Year Book

New England Residence by Rene Desjardins

Posted: 09 Jan 2014 05:36 PM PST

After failed to find an old building with the spirit of the American East Coast, the owner asked the designer Rene Desjardins to build a new house which possessed all the quality of New England style.

The newly build New England Residence is like an American cottages, it favours the light, the views, the landscape, friendly large rooms and wood, but the resemblance ends there. There are no rustic or nostalgic references here, no decorative excesses or accumulations. All the attributes of the bourgeois style have been reinterpreted in a way that could not be more contemporary, proof that minimalism, once mastered, stands beyond time. The villa does, however, give the impression that it has always been there. It is a place with history, where classic elements coexist with artfully crafted lamps, antiques and collectibles, Louis XV wing chairs and 1930s love seats, opulent velvet and rustic linen, Murano glass and plastic… almost as if remnants of generations past had accumulated in a family home.

The interior can be summarized in three words: consistency, flow and flexibility. As hoped, the villa is as appropriate for a dinner for 50 as it is for relaxed weekends among children and grandchildren, or even just a getaway for two. A wide corridor on the ground floor leads to reception areas facing the lake as well as the private wing on the garden side. A symbol of hospitality, the dining room has been placed at its core, facing the vestibule. The villa's considerable volume is nevertheless broken down into distinct spaces by openings – some of which are made theatrical by square panelled columns – that mark movement without introducing visual interruptions. Sliding doors that slip into the walls make it possible to close off or open up private rooms to satisfy many different needs. For personal privacy and freedom, the rooms upstairs have been designed as virtually independent worlds.

The villa is characterized throughout by style and refinement that are stripped of any pretension. Elegant Ipe floors and the occasional Oriental rug add a warm counterpoint to the pure, symmetrical lines. Similarly, white - a colour that is by definition pure - and honey yellow add a certain modernity to the wall panelling, the ceiling casings and the mouldings, creating a particularly peaceful atmosphere. Every element, down to the door handles, was designed and fabricated in accordance with good trade practice.

New England Residence is designed by Rene Desjardins of Gestion René Desjardins.

+ Gestion René Desjardins

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