Profile

Bates Masi + Architects LLC, a full-service architectural firm with roots in New York City and the East End of Long Island for over 50 years, responds to each project with extensive research in related architectural fields, material, craft and environment for unique solutions as varied as the individuals or groups for whom they are designed. The focus is neither the size nor the type of project but the opportunity to enrich lives and enhance the environment. The attention to all elements of design has been a constant in the firm’s philosophy. Projects include urban and suburban residences, schools, offices, hotels, restaurants, retail and furniture in the United States, Central America and the Caribbean. The firm has received 130 design awards since 2003 and has been featured in national and international publications including The New York Times, New York Magazine, Architectural Digest, Architectural Record, Metropolitan Home, and Dwell. Residential Architect Magazine selected Bates Masi one of their 50 Architect’s We Love. In 2013, Bates Masi was inducted into the Interior Design Hall of Fame.

Paul Masi spent childhood summers in Montauk and currently resides in Amagansett. He received a Bachelor of Architecture from Catholic University and a Masters of Architecture from the Graduate School of Design at Harvard University. He worked at Richard Meier & Partners before joining this firm in 1998.

Harry Bates, a resident of East Hampton, received a Bachelor of Architecture from North Carolina State University. After ten years with Skidmore, Owings & Merrill, he was in private practice in New York City for 17 years before moving the firm to Southampton on the East End in 1980. Our offices have recently relocated to a new office building of our own design in East Hampton.

Georgica Close

Georgica Close

Lot size: 2.34 acres

Building size: 3,500 sq. ft.

Location: East Hampton, NY

Program: Single Family Residence

Photographer: Bates Masi + Architects

Contractor: Lettieri Construction

 

The clients of this new home had been living in a house built in the 1960’s designed by a disciple of Marcel Breuer, one of the “modernist masters”. The site is situated along the shore of a coastal lagoon, and became a victim of the storm surge from Hurricane Sandy. Distraught by the destruction of their home, the clients sought to rebuild in an effort to restore the strong emotional connection they had to the previous dwelling.

Through research and a careful examination of the previous structure, the qualities the clients admired were carefully considered. First and foremost was the simplicity and truthfulness of the former architecture. It was evident in its exposed steel frame connections and the use of contemporary technologies of the day. To build on these virtues, the new house similarly uses a steel frame to support a roof comprised entirely of Cross Laminated Timber (CLT) panels. This new building system provided an ideal solution, as the panels provide long free spans, can be prefabricated, and bring a warm character to the residence when left exposed. To further celebrate their application, additional building systems are integrated into these prefabricated panels: lights are set into milled recesses, skylights cut through them reveal the solid nature of their construction, and active shading systems are unified with the large roof overhangs. By manufacturing these components offsite, a large portion of the home was delivered and assembled like a kit of parts.

The transverse layering and honesty of assembly exhibited by the CLT panels are further reflected in the detailing in the home. Steel columns in the walls are meticulously revealed, to highlight the structural tectonics at play. The cabinets are constructed of a bamboo plywood that shares a similar lamination technique, mirroring the architecture of the roof at a smaller scale. This commonality is evident when observing the grain direction on the deliberately exposed edges and eased finger pulls. Additional materials seek to heighten the sense of warmth in the home, including large cypress boards that coalesce interior and exterior space, and a burnished bronze fireplace that anchors the central public zone.

To comply with new flood zone requirements for the site, the house is elevated above the previous floor level, and a series of terraces soften the approach to the entry. The interior spaces are arranged on several clear axes, which expand views to the water, and provide perspectives through the architecture to the landscape beyond. These gestures ground the home in the landscape, and reinforce the client’s connection to the natural features of their property.

The architecture’s recognition of history allows the new home to become a familiar part of the couple’s lives, a child of the previous home. Drawing from the client’s memories, the new home becomes meaningful to them, restoring and strengthening their sense of place.