Georgian Bay Retreat

Canada

 
Georgian Bay Retreat is located near the site of a nineteenth-century French trading camp seventy miles north of Toronto. The site slopes down through a bright forest of mature birch trees and a dense band of evergreens bordering the rocky shore of the bay.

The simply organized house was arranged on two levels with the lower floor cut into the sloping land. Entered from grade, the upper level contains the major living and sleeping areas, which face west toward the lake.

A layering heightens the experience of moving through the site and house. The driveway winds through the forest, reaching a white-stained cedar plank wall that reflects the white trees. Only a log and stone fireplace alcove and the entry door interrupt this wall. Passing through the wall, an evergreen forest and the bay are revealed through large expanses of glass that make the sloping landscape an extension of the open plan.

The house's circulation extends along the planar east wall and is only punctuated by the counterpoint of an evocative fireplace alcove. Interior walls define more private spaces and appear as independent volumes within the post-and-beam timber structure.

Awards

2003 Merit Award
Residential Architect
2001 Honor Award
AIA Pennsylvania
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