Real Estate Confidential is a weekly chit-chat about new listings, sales, or other insider info on the Martha’s Vineyard Real Estate market, by Fred Roven, Martha’s Vineyard Buyer Agents. It appears each Friday in The Minute.
As you search for homes, and even when just cruising the Island by car or bike, contemporary homes are few and far between on Martha’s Vineyard. You will see many farmhouses, expanded or contemporary capes, stately Greek revivals, but not many creative-design contemporary structures. But if you look, there are some homes of the mid-20th century modern style with its stark lines, and examples of Scandanavian and German Bauhaus influence. Contemporary homes with more interesting design characteristics have taken a foothold on Martha’s Vineyard since 2000.
On the Vineyard, a good reason for the contemporary L- or U- shapes is to embrace the outdoor space, enhance the water views, and often to allow for a relaxed spot to enjoy the sunset — whether the sun is sinking into the water on the North Shore, or the sky over open ocean explodes with color. These designs make extensive use of natural light, have large windows with minimal trim, and clerestory windows to enhance the amount of light.
Contemporary design has rolled in modern home style marked by simple, clean lines — the idea that “form follows function” and includes the use of newer home materials such as iron, steel, and sheet glass, plus my personal favorite, copper, which will age gracefully for years to come. You may also find increased use of recycled building materials, sustainable, eco-friendly materials such as bamboo flooring and granite or concrete countertops, plus “green” heating, air-conditioning, and plumbing systems to conserve energy.
Simplicity is the most important design feature of contemporary homes. They reflect today’s lifestyles with open floor plans, areas designed to flow into one another and the inclusion of multi-use spaces such as great or family rooms. You are sure to acquire a property that is unique; that will flow along with you. Contemporary style home design incorporates a wide number of style features. It melds historic elements with current lifestyle concepts resulting in homes that are warm, inviting, and connected with the outdoors.
There is a rare new Katama Contemporary Beach House at 16 Smugglers Way. This is a custom designed multilevel home in a premier location bordering Edgartown Bay Road on 1.7 acres with ocean views. A striking feature is a 1300-square-foot roof deck with an outdoor kitchen and a green sedum roof garden. The home was designed by evoDomus LLC to the latest energy efficiency standards. Property is sold turn key: All furnishings are included except for some personal items. Optional membership to Mattakesett Resorts allows use of pool, tennis courts, gym, children programs and more.
4 Windy Way sits high above sea level with one of the most dramatic, unobstructed views of Vineyard Sound from Aquinnah to Woods Hole. A stroll across the picturesque grassy lawn with rolling dunes takes you to the 3,000 feet of sandy Makonikey association beach. The property has many options for creative expansion of the four-bedroom home designed with water views from most windows. There is a 6-bedroom septic installed and a detached artist’s studio. Makonikey is an exclusive rural enclave that boasts an up-Island lifestyle with spectacular sunsets, yet an easy drive to town.
The marketing for 2 Pilots Landing declares: “For those who want to enjoy the views, the beach and a very special communion with Nature in one of its most sacred places.” I might have to agree. The house was designed by Charles Rose with an ultra modern concept of three living area pavilions separated by grass courtyards and a roof deck with sweeping views with sunsets over the Elizabeth Islands. This gem can be the perfect beach house or a perfect year-round retreat, and includes a private path to one of the Island’s most coveted north shore beaches.
The Sengy Association home at 6 Mourning Dove Way is an example of a reasonably priced contemporary home in a waterfront community. Vacation homes are tending to be more low maintenance than in years past, and have an open, high-ceiling design as provided with this property. The multiple decks and patios provide great places to enjoy your morning coffee or entertain friends. This coastal contemporary beach house has many current priorities including easy access to the bike path, a community saltwater dock with mooring availability, tennis courts and a spring fed freshwater beach with boat launch and kayak storage.
Click here for a list of Contemporary homes for sale on the Vineyard.
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