Set on a south-facing hilltop, this indoor poolhouse was the vision of a client with fond memories of living in the Caribbean. Embracing North River’s commitment to energy efficiency, the client commissioned our design of her poolhouse using Passive House principles. Highly insulated and air-tight construction, triple-pane windows and skylights, and radiant-heated floors ensure a comfortable and energy-efficient swimming retreat no matter the time of year. Excess energy produced by the 26 kilowatt rooftop solar array is sent to the adjacent main house on the historic farm overlooking Mohonk Mountain House and the Shawangunk Ridge.
The poolhouse barn form blends with the owner’s 17th century Dutch colonial architecture next door, but the glass south facade wall opens as a surprise on sweeping views. A pair of 24-foot lift-and-slide doors open to allow for dramatic opening onto a bluestone patio and meadow beyond, inspired by the tropical verandas of the client’s former home. With a simple and visually quiet interior palette of white oak slats, waterproof plaster, and locally-sourced bluestone floor, the interiors provide a quiet study in contrasts of the local palette, climate, and life history of the client.