84 DESIGN NEW ENGLAND JANUARY/FEBRUARY 2017
A freshwater reminder of the last ice age, it is
only a stone’s throw from the Atlantic Ocean,
where waves crash dramatically upon the
rocky shore in Biddeford, Maine. Eagles, too,
frequent the skies over the pond, and hawks
occasionally perch on the porch railings of the
house. Stained cedar walls make reference to
the legacy of local cottages, while the building’s unselfconscious simplicity forms the perfect foil for nature’s abundant display.
The husband-and-wife team of Steven
and Wiebke Theodore of Theodore + Theodore Architects in Arrowsic, Maine, designed
the thoroughly Modern yet modest house to
“sit lightly on the land,” says Steven Theodore.
While the new dwelling is a net-zero user of
energy, little of the green technology is apparent. Rather, in its refreshingly quiet demeanor,
Lily Pond House seems to be a part of the rocky
landscape. A massive granite outcrop dictated
the dwelling’s placement and design; its reinforced concrete foundations are anchored to
Such specific placement came from
homeowners Alper and Margaret Caglayan’s desire to retain a natural outdoor patio
that had been in front of the 1955 Cape Cod–
style house that formerly stood on the site
and was their summer getaway for 27 years.
Besides the patio, however, there was little to
be admired in the earlier cottage, which was so
clumsily placed that the only ocean view was
from the bathroom. Such insensitive oversight
fueled the couple’s insistence that landscape
architect Todd Richardson of Richardson &
the living room embraces a view of ocean and
pond, as well as the rocky outcrop that is the
house’s touchstone. Tall window-doors open to the
landscape, while the transoms above offer images
of the sky and trees. Even with all the glass, the
house is toasty warm in the Maine winter with
radiant heating beneath the concrete floor.
The pond that gives
Lily Pond House its
name is a fishing ground
for egrets and herons.