Gold Winner: Gardner/Fox,
Bryn Mawr, Pa.
Project location: Malvern, Pa.
Sq. ft. before: 458
Sq. ft. after: 692
The purpose of this Detached Structure project by Gardner/Fox was to create a family gathering space for a family of six, including space for entertaining small and large groups of friends. They were also challenged with creating an indoor/outdoor space opening to the existing pool on one side and open to the woods on the other, plus create a structure appropriate in scale and detail to complement the existing early 19th century original main farmhouse, with the feel and materials of the original R. Brognard Okie-style Southeastern Pennsylvania farmhouse aesthetic.
The challenges for Gardner/Fox were to make the pool house interior resemble a barn/outbuilding and complement the main house. The client also wanted the structure to be as maintenance-free as possible and the space to be as open as possible to the outdoors during pool season. It was equally important to winterize the structure during the cold season. The new pool house would include a fireplace and have storage area for firewood. Working with a limited budget was a challenge, and the difficult site offered limited access for excavation equipment.
The pool house is located a couple hundred yards from the driveway on a steep slope and was designed to remain within the footprint of the existing pool house and tie into the existing pool deck. To provide access for cords of firewood to be delivered directly to the pool house, a cart path was cut through the woods from the driveway around the back of the house. The firewood storage area can be accessed from the side entry or from the interior of the structure for maximum convenience.
The structure itself was constructed from standard stick framing with the exception of the hearth room where salvaged rough-hewn oak beams form traditional trusses. While the façade appears to be covered entirely in fieldstone, the two sides facing the woods were enclosed in a more budget-friendly siding.
Sliding barn doors at the front and back of the pool house allow the structure to be fully opened or closed, depending on the season. A new dormer allows sunlight to filter into the hearth room from its southern exposure.
Finally, to address maintenance issues, care was taken to select durable and maintenance-free interior and exterior materials. This included such things as Hardi Plank siding, natural stone veneer, AZEK exterior trim, Marvin clad window units and stone tile floors.
Bath fixtures: Kohler
Brick/Masonry: Rolling Rock Quarry–Natural Thin Stone Veneer Field Stone Blend
Doors: Tague Lumber and Woodstar
Flooring Tile/Stone: Devon Tile
Kitchen Countertops: Gravena–New Venetian Gold Polished Granite
Kitchen Appliances: SubZero and GE
Roofing: Cedar Shingle
Siding: James Hardie
Trim Work: AZEK and Tague Lumber
Alward Construction Co., Inc., Berkeley, Calif.
Decks & More, Inc., Smyrna, Ga.