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Seaside Village House




Branford, CT


3,242 SF


New construction: open plan for living, dining, and kitchen; bedroom with en suite bathroom; guest bedroom; private study; widow’s walk; front porch; private patio


Jim Fiora 

Situated in a small shoreline village, the original house was in such poor condition that it could not be restored. Additionally, the site’s property and setback restrictions resulted in a narrow building lot. To resolve the complex challenges of the project, a double gable configuration was derived, in a style reminiscent of a historic carriage house. The two major building elements are clad in different materials to reduce the scale and relate the residence to the varied materials of the neighborhood. A vertical painted board and batten siding for the garage strikingly contrasts with horizontal stained cedar shingles for the residence.


The new two-and-one-half-story dwelling portion of the home combines living room, dining room, and kitchen functions into a continuous open space. It features front-to-back views, a coffered ceiling, and a scene-stealing lava stone fireplace flanked by transom windows. The second floor sleeping areas are arranged in a nonlinear manner. Frequently treated as unoccupied space, the attic has instead been repurposed to serve as a private study, as well as to access the rooftop widow’s walk, which has a centrally located octagonal window providing spectacular views of Long Island Sound.


The building, well-integrated to its site, includes a deep-covered front porch and an intimate bluestone patio complemented by natural landscaping and cedar fencing.

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